The ArtSpring Presents season opens its Opera series on October 12th with one of opera’s most thrilling dramatic sopranos, Christine Goerke who reprises her fierce portrayal of the title princess. Yannick Nézet-Séguin conducts Franco Zeffirelli’s dazzling production of Puccini’s final masterpiece, which also features tenors Roberto Aronica as Calàf, sopranos Eleonora Buratto as Liù, and bass-baritone James Morris as Timur.
World premiere: Teatro alla Scala, Milan, 1926. Puccini’s final opera is an epic fairy tale set in a China of legend, loosely based on a play by 18th-century Italian dramatist Carlo Gozzi. Featuring a most unusual score with an astounding and innovative use of chorus and orchestra, it is still recognizably Puccini, bursting with instantly appealing melody. The unenviable task of completing the opera’s final scene upon Puccini’s sudden death was left to the composer Franco Alfano. Conductor Arturo Toscanini oversaw Alfano’s contribution and led the world premiere.