Irish National Opera Presents Richard Strauss’s Der Rosenkavalier

Posted February 10, 2023 in Arts & Culture Features




Love and lust. Culture and crudity. Disguise and deceit. Masters and servants. Opulence to die for. This ravishing five-star opera, Strauss’s Der Rosenkavalier, is presented by Irish National Opera and features one of greatest-ever female trios performed by three of Ireland’s finest singers – on stage together for the first time – sopranos Celine Byrne (Marschallin) and Claudia Boyle (Sophie) and mezzo-soprano Paula Murrihy (Octavian). Raging hormones fuel the aristocratic intrigues in this indulgent celebration of the extravagant lifestyle of a bygone age. The orchestra is sumptuous. The sopranos soar with heart-stopping beauty. Operatic nostalgia doesn’t come any finer than this. Der Rosenkavalier is in Bord Gáis Energy Theatre from Sunday 5th to Saturday 11th March.

Director Bruno Ravella says ”Der Rosenkavalier is a social comedy, it’s got an amazing libretto which is witty, intelligent, very human and well observed. That combined with Strauss’s sublime music – it’s a dream, dream piece”. Ravella’s staging of Der Rosenkavalier received 5 star reviews on its first outing and was described as “a triumpha joy to the ears and a feast for the eyes” by the Daily Mail and ”a witty delight from start to finish“ by the Financial Times.  Opera Magazine stated that Ravella “is a director with a deep understanding of the craft of opera production, and an appreciation of tradition, yet with plenty of new ideas of his own… ingenious scenic solutions”. The Rosenkavalier’s stunning opulent set, which reveals many clever surprises, is designed by Portadown native Gary McCann, whose work on Bizet’s Carmen and Puccini’s Tosca were both great operatic successes for INO at Bord Gáis Energy Theatre last year.

INO artistic director Fergus Sheil, who conducts the performances, says it’s a production not to be missed. “Richard Strauss’s Der Rosenkavalier, not seen in Dublin since 1984, is the high point of romantic gorgeousness in opera. It is like the greatest, most sumptuous feast, held on the eve of developments that would change the world of music forever. Just two years later, Stravinsky premiered his Rite of Spring and twentieth-century music would be wrenched in an entirely new direction. Shakespeare proposed the idea that ‘Everything that grows, holds in perfection but a little moment’. Der Rosenkavalier is that perfect moment for romantic opera. It cannot be surpassed. It is the peak.”

The talented cast also includes Rachel Croash (Marianne), Carolyn Holt (Annina), Andreas Bauer Kanabas (Baron Ochs), Samuel Dale Johnson (Faninal), César Cortés (Italian Tenor), Peter Van Hulle (Valzacchi), David Howes (Police Commissar), Michael Bell  (Marschallin’s Major Domo) and Vladyslav Volk (Leopold). Der Rosenkavalier features the Irish National Opera chorus, childrens’ chorus and the Irish National Opera Orchestra.

Der Rosenkavalier will play for four performances only at Bord Gáis Energy Theatre on Sunday 5, Tuesday 7, Thursday 9 and Saturday 11 March 2023. 

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