(GREAT BARRINGTON, Mass.) – Berkshire Opera Festival’s 2022 season culminates with a new staging of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s comedy-tragedy masterpiece Don Giovanni by BOF co-founder Jonathon Loy at the Mahaiwe on Saturday, August 20, at 1pm; Tuesday, August 23, at 7:30pm; and Friday, August 26, at 7:30pm. BOF artistic director and co-founder Brian Garman conducts the Berkshire Opera Festival Orchestra and Chorus.
Often considered to be Mozart’s greatest work, Don Giovanni is based on the legend of Don Juan and tells the story of antihero Giovanni’s slow demise. Stage director Jonathon Loy says: “This production of Giovanni is not defined by place or a time period. We will be forced to see inside the depths of Giovanni’s soul for what he truly is, a devastatingly flawed, lecherous man who yields great influence over his surroundings. Through the addition of dance, we’ll take the journey with Giovanni as he makes his way to the depths of hell, as he tries to take everyone down with him.”
Libretto is by Lorenzo da Ponte. The opera will be sung in Italian with projected English supertitles. The approximate running time is 3 hours and 10 minutes, including one intermission.
André Courville makes his Berkshire Opera Festival debut in the lead role of Don Giovanni. Courville is a rising star in the opera world and has been praised by Opera News for his “splendid, lush bass-baritone.”
Opposite Courville is Christian Zaremba in the role of Leporello. The French-American bass has been seen in recent productions of Puccini’s Tosca and Gianni Schicchi at the Metropolitan Opera, as well as in lead roles with Austin Opera.
The cast also features 2019 Richard Tucker Foundation career grant recipient Laura Wilde in the role of Donna Anna, who has been hailed by Opera News for having “a ravishingly beautiful sound, [and] a fine sense of style and character.”
The fast-rising British-American tenor Joshua Blue sings Don Ottavio. Opera News has raved about Joshua, “whose saints-raising tenor and complete embodiment of his songs were revelatory.” Mezzo-soprano Megan Moore portrays Donna Elvira
Preceding the Saturday, August 20, matinee is a free pre-performance talk with dramaturg Cori Ellison at noon (11:45am doors) for all ticket holders. Ellison is a leading creative figure in the opera world and has served as staff dramaturg at Santa Fe Opera, the Glyndebourne Festival, and New York City Opera. Cori’s supertitles have been seen in all BOF mainstage productions since Madama Butterfly in 2016.
This production was originally scheduled for the 2020 fifth anniversary season but was cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic. In a quick pivot, the cast collaborated on a virtual concert recorded in their homes and studios, which streamed in August 2020. The majority of this original cast returns.