Northern Ireland Opera today announces the main cast for the critically-acclaimed national opera company’s stunning new adaptation of Giuseppe Verdi’s tragic love story, La Traviata, directed by Artistic Director Cameron Menzies, opening at Belfast’s Grand Opera House this September.
Distinguished International tenor Noah Stewart and Ukrainian baritone Yuriy Yurchuk, who both starred in the opera company’s critically-acclaimed site-specific production of La Bohéme, are welcomed back to perform, this time in the setting of the Grand Opera House, as Alfredo and Giorgio Germont respectively.
They will join previously announced rising soprano star Siobhan Stagg who debuts in the leading role as courtesan Violetta Valéry.
Irish talents and winners of the prestigious Deborah Voigt Opera Prize, soprano Ellen Mawhinney and mezzo-soprano Margaret Bridge are cast in the roles of Annina and Flora Bervoix respectively, while Northern Ireland Opera’s Associate Artist and tenor Owen Lucas makes his debut as Gastone de Letorières.
One of the country’s finest basses Graeme Danby who during his long career has made over 1000 appearances for the English National Opera returns to the opera company to perform as Dottore Grenvil.
Joining the creative team are Enniskillen-born Niall McKeever creator of NI Opera’s showstopping Into The Woods set at the Lyric this year and lighting designer Kevin Treacy.
Previously announced are renowned stage and screen choreographer Isabel Baquero and conductor Rebecca Lang, one of the most versatile and vivacious cross-over artists of her generation, with accolades in both opera and musical theatre. Lang returns to the company after her huge success with La Bohéme.
NI Opera reunites with the Ulster Orchestra for the first collaboration since the pandemic and has also cast a 24-strong chorus of Northern Irish and Irish artists. The singers, chosen as part of a local casting call out, will also join NI Opera’s new chorus development programme and receive training and support including from the renowned Thomas Victor Johnson, Music Staff at Staatsoper Unter den Linden.
La Traviata’s gloriously romantic score brings to life the tragic love story of a beautiful courtesan Violetta Valéry and her lover Alfredo Germont. NI Opera’s striking new production will explore the idea around image, visibility and the fragility of a woman’s agency within her society.
Artistic Director Cameron Menzies comments: “La Traviata sees the welcome return of opera to the Grand Opera House, Belfast and the first collaboration with our esteemed colleagues at the Ulster Orchestra since before the pandemic. Northern Ireland Opera are extremely proud to be showcasing some of our best local operatic talent and to welcome our international guests to the world premiere of this new production. It is such a wonderful privilege to be able to create opera at its very highest level with our exciting collaborators.”