Flavio

Handel - Autumn 2011

Handel’s fourth full-length opera for the Royal Academy of Music – and one of ETO’s 2009 Handelfest most successful productions.

Conductor 
Jonathan Peter Kenny
Director 
James Conway
Designer 
Joanna Parker
Lighting Designer 
Kevin Treacy

Flavio was a runaway success for ETO in 2009. Mixing comedy and tragedy, and set in the corrupt, sensuous court of Lombardy, it follows the fortunes of two pairs of star-crossed lovers, trapped in the bitter rivalry between families.

James Conway’s subtle, highly-choreographed production, in Joanna Parker’s chromatic blue sets, pays equal attention to all the character’s deeply-felt emotions, grand or apparently trivial.

Paula Sides, Clint van der Linde and Andrew Slater – each praised for their sharply edged characterisations in 2009 – return for this revival of a rarely-performed jewel of the 18th century, performed in lavish period costume.

2009 Handelfest revival
Sung in English
Runnning time: 2 hours and 44 minutes (including interval)
Pre-show talks before all shows: contact the venue for more information about time and location and to book.

The story

Click here to read a plot summary of the opera.

The music

Click through to listen to a sample of music from Handel’s Flavio.

Or listen to our Spotify playlist. (Not on Spotify? Click here to join for free)

Interviews, videos and trailers


Production trailer by Nick Howard

  • From the archives: a 2-min introduction to Flavio by ETO’s General Director James Conway (click here)
  • Find out what happens behind the scenes: interviews and rehearsals from 2009 Handelfest (click here)

Festival tips and local secrets

We are sure that in between performances you will be keen to get out and about and make the most of what the places we are touring to have to offer. With this in mind, we have compiled guides to some of this season’s towns and venues, listing places to go, attractions to visit and tips on where to eat and shop. Enjoy your stay!

What the papers say

“Director James Conway perfectly hits the mark with his vibrant production” ***** (5 stars) The Independent
“Vocally, it’s exceptionally strong.” **** (4 stars) The Guardian
“An astonishing achievement” The Sunday Times

Showing At

  1. Britten Theatre, Royal College of Music, London
    14th Oct 2011 - 7:30 pm
  2. Britten Theatre, Royal College of Music, London
    15th Oct 2011 - 7:30 pm
  3. Theatre Royal Bath
    18th Oct 2011 - 7:30 pm
  4. West Road Concert Hall, Cambridge
    28th Oct 2011 - 7:30 pm
  5. Theatre Royal, Lincoln
    30th Oct 2011 - 7:30 pm
  6. Harrogate Theatre
    4th Nov 2011 - 7:30 pm
  7. Wycombe Swan Theatre
    7th Nov 2011 - 7:30 pm
  8. Exeter Northcott Theatre
    16th Nov 2011 - 7:30 pm
  9. Malvern Theatres
    23rd Nov 2011 - 7:30 pm
  1. Britten Theatre, Royal College of Music, London — 14th Oct 2011 - 7:30 pm

    Prince Consort Road, South Kensington, London, SW7 2BS

    • Sold Out

  2. Britten Theatre, Royal College of Music, London — 15th Oct 2011 - 7:30 pm

    Prince Consort Road, South Kensington, London, SW7 2BS

  3. Theatre Royal Bath — 18th Oct 2011 - 7:30 pm

    Theatre Royal Bath, Sawclose, Bath, BA1 1ET

  4. West Road Concert Hall, Cambridge — 28th Oct 2011 - 7:30 pm

    11 West Road, Cambridge, CB3 9DP

  5. Theatre Royal, Lincoln — 30th Oct 2011 - 7:30 pm

    Clasketgate, Lincoln, LN2 1JJ

  6. Harrogate Theatre — 4th Nov 2011 - 7:30 pm

    Harrogate Theatre, Oxford Street, Harrogate, North Yorkshire, HG1 1QF

  7. Wycombe Swan Theatre — 7th Nov 2011 - 7:30 pm

    Saint Mary Street, High Wycombe, HP11 2XE

  8. Exeter Northcott Theatre — 16th Nov 2011 - 7:30 pm

    Exeter Northcott, Stocker Road, Exeter, EX4 4QB

  9. Malvern Theatres — 23rd Nov 2011 - 7:30 pm

    Malvern Theatres, Grange Road, Malvern, Worcestershire, WR14 3HB

Jonathan Peter Kenny

Jonathan Peter Kenny

Conductor

Jonathan is from Liverpool and studied at the University of Exeter and Guildhall School of Music and Drama. He is a founder of the Old Street Band.

He has performed a wide range of music from Monteverdi to the present day, including 14 Handel operas, 13 oratorios and numerous premieres for composers such as Michael Nyman, Jonathan Dove, Pawel Mykietyn, Fabio Vacchi, Deirdre Gribbin, Thomas Ades and Roxanna Panufnik. He has sung for the Royal Opera Covent Garden, Glyndebourne Festival Opera, English National Opera, English Touring Opera, Teatro Comunale di Bologna, Royal Opera Copenhagen, Salzburg Festival, Halle Handel Festival, Badischestaatsteater Karlsruhe, BBC Proms, Glimmerglass Festival NY, Teatr Wielki Warsaw, Opera du Rhin and in Australia and Japan.

Jonathan has performed with Academy of Ancient Music, Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment, Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra, Royal Scottish National Orchestra, English Baroque Soloists, Gabrieli Consort, Ulster Orchestra under such conductors as Sir John Eliot Gardiner, Richard Hickox, David Parry, Ivan Fischer, Thierry Fischer, Jane Glover, Andrew Parrott, Lars Ulrik Mortensen, Ivor Bolton, Paul McCreesh, Harry Bicket. Recordings include Mattheus-Passion (Miller/Goodwin); Agrippina (Gardiner); Buxtehude/Cantatas (Immerseel); La conversione di Clodoveo (Gester); Israel in Babylon (Fontaine).

Jonathan is baroque specialist at the Royal College of Music International Opera School and prepared singers for Handel’s Poro, Atalanta, Alessandro, Il pastor fido and Rodelinda, as well as Monteverdi’s L’incoronazione di Poppea with Michael Rosewell whom he also assisted on Janacek’s The Cunning Little Vixen. For Trinity-Laban, Jonathan worked on Giustino and Rinaldo.

Jonathan’s performing edition of Tamerlano has been performed in London, Melbourne, Lisbon, Dublin and Prague.

After many years leading his own ensembles, Jonathan made his operatic conducting debut in 2005 with a staging of Pergolesi’s Stabat Mater on Valentia Island for artist Dorothy Cross and OTC Dublin. The film was shown at the Irish Museum of Modern Art and in Los Angeles. In 2007 he conducted a new production of Handel’s Teseo for ETO, touring the UK, and in 2009 a new production of Flavio which opened to great enthusiasm as part of the HANDELFEST marking the 250th anniversary of Handel’s death. From these performances, a new period instrument orchestra, the Old Street Band, was formed, making a highly acclaimed debut in autumn 2011 in a new production of Xerxes. Other appearances include a staging of Carissimi’s Jephte for the National Churches Trust; Monteverdi: 1610 and all that at the RCM and a highly praised The Duchess of Malfi Webster/Gesualdo at the Royal and Derngate Theatre Northampton.

Plans include a revival of Flavio, a production of Alcina in Castelnuovo di Garfagnana, where Ariosto (author of Orlando furioso on which Alcina is based) was governor, in summer 2012, a reconstruction of Muzio Scevola (Amadei/Buoncini/Handel) and a new production of Agrippina.

James Conway

James Conway

Director

General Director of ETO, James Conway has directed 24 new productions and 4 revivals for the company, including Donizetti’s The Siege of Calais (to be revived in 2015), Maria Stuarda and Anna Bolena and Handel’s Alcina, Ariodante, Teseo, Tolomeo, Flavio, Xerxes and Agrippina. Other notable ETO productions include Eugene Onegin, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Simon Boccanegra, The Emperor of Atlantis and the world première of Alexander Goehr’s Promised End. For RCM he directed L’incoronazione di Poppea and Le nozze di Figaro, and for the Canadian Opera Company Don Giovanni. His production of The Cunning Little Vixen is in repertory at the Moravian National Theatre in Janacek’s home city of Brno. He has written original libretti for 2 operas and translations for 5 others, as well as several works of fiction; his most recent translation was last season’s Agrippina. Upcoming productions include Giulio Cesare (Lucca) and Ottone (ETO).

Joanna Parker

Joanna Parker

Designer

Designs for theatre, opera and dance. Joanna’s opera engagements include The Rape of Lucretia (RCM); Flavio, Eugene Onegin, Falstaff, Alcina, Le nozze di Figaro, A Midsummer Night’s Dream and The Cunning Little Vixen (all ETO). She has also worked with the ROH, SO, and OTC Dublin.

Joanna’s designs for theatre include The Young Vic, Hampstead Theatre, West Yorkshire Playhouse, Salisbury Playhouse and The Lyric Hammersmith. She designed The Noise of Time for Theatre de Complicité at the Lincoln Centre NY, Barbican Centre London and European Festivals.

Dance designs include Cholmondeleys, Shobana Jeyasingh Dance Company and London Contemporary Dance Theatre. She is Senior Lecturer in Scenography at Central School of Speech and Drama.

Kevin Treacy

Kevin Treacy

Lighting Designer

Kevin’s designs include The Shawshank Redemption (Wyndhams Theatre, West End); The Nose (The Performance Corporation – winner for Best Lighting Design, Irish Times Theatre Awards for 2008); Dr. Ledbetter’s Experiment (Edinburgh Fringe Festival and Kilkenny Festival); The Yokohama Delegation (Kilkenny Festival); Drive-By (Dublin Fringe Festival and Canterbury Festival); This is our Youth (Bedrock Productions); Il barbiere di Siviglia, Don Giovanni, Rigoletto, Hänsel und Gretel, Les contes d’Hoffmann, Il viaggio a Reims, Pagliacci, The Medium and Suor Angelica (Wexford Festival Opera 2002-2008); La Tragédie de Carmen (WFO and ETO – nominated Best Opera, Irish Times Theatre Awards 2007); The Little Magic Flute (ETO and OTC); The Kiss, Hänsel und Gretel, Il barbiere di Siviglia and Xerxes (OTC).

Cast

Jake Arditti

Jake Arditti

Counter tenor

Guido

Finalist and special prize winner at the 2012 Innsbruck International Baroque Singing Competition‚ countertenor Jake Arditti studied at the Guildhall School and the Royal College of Music’s prestigious Opera School, supported by a Countess of Munster Musical Trust Award‚ a Drapers Company‚ Baroness de Turckheim Scholarship and the Josephine Baker Trust. His professional career began as a treble‚ performing with English National Opera and Glyndebourne Festival‚ where he sang Yniold Pelléas et Mélisande.

Recent and future plans include Othniel in Handel’s Joshua and Spirit Dido and Aeneas for Opera North‚ Nireno Julius Caesar (ENO)‚ Cupid Venus and Adonis and Spirit (Innsbruck Festival)‚ title role Riccardo Primo (London Handel Festival under Laurence Cummings)‚ Guido Flavio (ETO) and SUM , a new work by Max Richter (ROH2). Other roles include Apollo Terpsicore/Il Pastor Fido and Unulfo Rodelinda (London Handel Festival).

Theatre work includes The Revenger’s Tragedy and Dido Queen of Carthage (National Theatre) and Laurie Sansom’s critically-acclaimed production of The Duchess of Malfi for The Royal and Derngate‚ Northampton.

Recent and future concerts include performances at Heidelberg’s Frühling Festival of Respighi’s Il Tramonto and Hilda Paredes’ Canciones Lunaticas for countertenor and string quartet‚ which had its UK premiere at the Wigmore Hall and will be performed at the 2014 Edinburgh Festival, and The Pera Ensemble’s Soul to Soul programme (Heidelberg and Cologne) as well as performances with the Arditti Quartet at the Wien Modern (Vienna)‚ Festival d’Automne (Paris)‚ Edenkoben, Germany and Tokyo.

Clint van der Linde

Clint van der Linde

Counter tenor

Flavio

Clint studied at the RCM. He has worked as a soloist with many groups such as the OAE; RPO; The Academy of Ancient Music; The London Handel Orchestra; Le Musiche Nove; Israel Camerata. Clint’s opera roles include Lotario/ Flavio/ Flavio; Dardano/ Amadigi; Judas/ Brockes Passion; In November 2001 he sang the role of Oberon/ A Midsummer Night‘s Dream, which was the launch of the BBIOS, and also performed this role in the ROH in Copenhagen in 2004. Festival engagements include Carmina Burana (Ludwigsburger Schossfestspiele); Halle Händel Festspiele; Cuenca Festival, Spain. In addition, Clint recorded the title role of Francesco Conti’s David with the Lautten Compagney. In December, Clint will tour Handel’s Messiah (Melbourne Symphony Orchestra and the Queensland Orchestra).

Lina Markeby

Lina Markeby

Mezzo soprano

Vitige

Lina was born in Sweden, started her singing studies there and completed them at GSMD. She has recently performed Cherubino/ Le Nozze di Figaro and Dorabella/ Così fan tutte (Théatre des Champs Elysées; Atelier Lyrique de Tourcoing) with Jean-Claude Malgoire. Other roles include Arcane/ Teseo (ETO), Second Woman in Katie Mitchell´s After Dido (ENO; The Young Vic); Second Woman in Deborah Warner’s Dido & Aeneas (Les Arts Florissants for Wiener Festwochen; Opéra Comique; The Netherlands Opera); Messaggiera/Ninfa/ L’Orfeo (Drottningholm); Carmen/ La Tragédie de Carmen, Third Sprite/ Rusalka (both Wexford Festival); Doris/Zaide/ L’Europe Galante (Academie Baroque d’Ambronay, cond. William Christie). In concert she has performed the roles of Idamante/ Idomeneo (Chelsea Opera Group), Idamante and Sesto in extracts from Idomeneo and La Clemenza di Tito (Mozart Galas, English Baroque Soloists, cond. John Eliot Gardiner). Future plans include Sesto/ Giulio Cesare with Jean-Claude Malgoire (Atelier Lyrique de Tourcoing at L’Opéra Royal; Versailles; on tour across France).

Paula Sides

Paula Sides

Soprano

Emilia

Ms Paula Sides will sing the role of Tosca on 4 March (London), 18 March (Poole), 21 March (Sheffield), 8 April (York), 11 April (Wolverhampton), 13 April (Leicester), 19 April (Cheltenham), 28 April (Cambridge), 4 May (Buxton), 16 May (Durham), 18 May (Perth), 23 & 26 May (Exeter), 1 June (Norwich) and 7 June (Ulverston).

Paula received the Tagor Gold Medal from the RCM and the Karaviotis Prize at the Les Azuriales International Competition. At RCM, she was a finalist for the Young Concert Artists Trust and received the Coutts & Co. Award along with the Sir Thomas Allen Scholarship supported by a Clayton Award. Operatic roles include Norina/ Don Pasquale, Gilda/ Rigoletto (Preggio Opera Festival, Italy); Atalanta/ Atalanta (Handel Society); Bastienne/ Bastien und Bastienne (Skipton Camerata); Mimi/ La bohème, Inez/ Il trovatore (both Opus I Opera); Grasshopper/ The Cunning Little Vixen (RCM). Covers include Governess/ Turn of the Screw (Opera North). Concert engagements include Mozart Unwrapped (King’s Place with Roger Vignoles November 2011), City of Dreams (Philharmonia Orchestra concert series 2009); City Music Society series (Eric Falk Trust Award). Paula has also recorded a Peroni advert soundtrack. Previously for ETO, Paula has performed the roles of Pamina/ The Magic Flute, Clizia/ Teseo, Emilia/ Flavio, Susanna/ Figaro.
www.operauk.com/paula-sides

Andrew Slater

Andrew Slater

Baritone

Lotario

Mr Andrew Slater will sing the role of Scarpia on 30 March (Snape), 25 April (Cambridge), 3 May (Buxton), 16 May (Durham), 23 May (Exeter) and 29 May (Truro).

Andrew studied at Royal Northern College of Music and St Petersburg Conservatoire. He has performed more than 75 opera roles including Lotario, Ariodate, Falstaff, Bottom, Bartolo, Blitch, Alfonso, Donald and Araspe (All ETO); Ben Selim (Royal Opera House), Nachtigal (Grange Park Opera), Golaud (Glyndebourne Touring Opera), Faninal (Scottish Opera), Basilio (Welsh National Opera), Sacristan (Opera North), Colline (English National Opera) etc.

Recordings include Nyman, Love Counts and Mozart 252 (MNR); Michael Berkeley, Jane Eyre (Chandos); Stravinsky, The Flood (Twentieth Century Classics).

Kitty Whately

Kitty Whately

Mezzo soprano

Teodata

Winner of the Kathleen Ferrier Award 2011 and the 59th Royal Over-seas League Award for Singers, British mezzo soprano Kitty Whately trained at Chetham’s School of Music, the Guildhall School of Music and Drama and the Royal College of Music International Opera School. She was also a finalist at the Les Azuriales International Singing Competition 2010.

Kitty has recently sung Rosina The Barber of Seville for English Touring Opera, Cherubino Le Nozze di Figaro, Dorabella Così fan tutte and Eduige Rodelinda for RCMIOS, Kate Owen Wingrave for Nuremberg International Chamber Music Festival, and Edith in Arne’s Alfred for the Classical Opera Company. She has also sung cover roles in the world premiere of Peter Etvos’ Love and Other Demons for Glyndebourne Festival Opera, and Idamante Idomeneo for Buxton Festival Opera. Other operatic roles include Nancy Albert Herring, Juno Semele, Second Lady The Magic Flute, and Johanna Sweeney Todd.

On the recital platform, Kitty has worked with Roger Vignoles, Malcolm Martineau, Gary Matthewman and Joseph Middleton. She has given recitals at Oxford Lieder Festival, Wigmore Hall, the Elgar Room (RAH), and Kings Place. A Samling Foundation Scholar, Kitty has also participated in a workshop week with Sir Thomas Allen and Roger Vignoles in 2010.

Highlights in 2012/13 season include her debut at the English National Opera, playing several roles in The Pilgrim’s Progress, Elgar’s Dream of Gerontius at St John’s Smith Square, Messiah at RAH, the Verbier Festival Christmas Concert, Dorabella Così fan tutte for English Touring Opera, Canteloube Chansons d’Auvergne with RPO at RFH, and a recital of Shakespeare settings at Wigmore Hall.

Kitty Whately was awarded the Cuthbert Smith prize, the Ted Moss and Bertha Taylor-Stach lieder prize and 1st place in the Joan Chissell Schumann competition. She is also supported by the English Touring Opera Young Artist Programme.

Mark Wilde

Mark Wilde

Tenor

Ugone

Mark Wilde was born in Scotland and studied at the University of East Anglia and RCM.
He made his Glyndebourne debut as Ferrando Così fan tutte, and has since appeared with ENO, Glyndebourne on Tour, WNO, the European Opera Centre, Birmingham Opera, Garsington Opera, the Savoy Theatre Opera, and the Netherlands Opera. Previously with ETO, Mark has sung Tamino Die Zauberflöte, the title role La Clemenza di Tito, Farmer Bunce in Picker’s The Fantastic Mr. Fox, Flavio, The Fairy Queen and the title role Albert Herring.
Mark is also a prominent concert singer, and has appeared with most of the UK’s and Europe’s major orchestras.
Engagements this season include Britten Spring Symphony in Ekaterinburg (Ural Philharmonic Orchestra), a Britten recital (Musica Sacra Maastricht) and Binet in Offenbach’s Vert Vert (Garsington Opera).

Director James Conway perfectly hits the mark with his vibrant production.

***** (Five stars) The Independent

Vocally, it’s exceptionally strong.

**** (Four stars) The Guardian

An astonishing achievement… the theatricality emerges with effortless artifice.

Sunday Times

The elusive mood of Flavio…is beautifully conveyed, especially by Paula Sides, a pinpoint-accurate high soprano, and Carolyn Dobbin, a warm-toned mezzo with a mischievous comic touch.

The Times

A lengthy show passes by speedily, with a constant sense of engagement and flow with Joanna Parker’s colourful minimalist designs providing an attractive and effective background. Well worth catching as it tours up and down England during the autumn.

The Stage

Showing At

  1. Britten Theatre, Royal College of Music, London
    14th Oct 2011 - 7:30 pm
  2. Britten Theatre, Royal College of Music, London
    15th Oct 2011 - 7:30 pm
  3. Theatre Royal Bath
    18th Oct 2011 - 7:30 pm
  4. West Road Concert Hall, Cambridge
    28th Oct 2011 - 7:30 pm
  5. Theatre Royal, Lincoln
    30th Oct 2011 - 7:30 pm
  6. Harrogate Theatre
    4th Nov 2011 - 7:30 pm
  7. Wycombe Swan Theatre
    7th Nov 2011 - 7:30 pm
  8. Exeter Northcott Theatre
    16th Nov 2011 - 7:30 pm
  9. Malvern Theatres
    23rd Nov 2011 - 7:30 pm

Your Comments

  1. I went to see Flavio last night at the Theatre Royal Bath and it did not disappoint. Wonderful singing and playing from the excellent orchestra increased my enjoyment of this Handel Opera.
    It was very reminiscent of my visits to Sadlers Wells in the early 1970's to see the Handel Opera Society under Charles Farncombe, when they would perform rare gems of Handel opera.
    I also took my teenage son to this performance to see his 'first Handel opera'. He told me afterwards that "it was sick" (which I understand in 'youthspeak' means very good!)- and yes he wants to see another.
    All in all a super evening. Thanks to all at ETO. Bravo.

    Said Pau Allen at 16:51pm on 19th Oct 2011

  2. I'd never encountered this opera so here was a great opportunity to extend my knowledge of Handel. Loved it. Excellent production, well-staged, musically and dramatically convincing. Counter-tenors in the castrato roles may not be historically authentic but I like my men played by men so full marks all round.

    Said D J Parkin at 09:38am on 5th Nov 2011

  3. I viewed Flavio at the Britten Theatre a few weeks ago and enjoyed it greatly. I particularly enjoyed the singing of Paula Sides--not only musically brilliant but so dramatically moving--and the comic playing of Mark Wilde as the nasty Ugone. The story was quite unique and surprisingly 'modern' in its 'forgiveness' of sensual love outside of marriage; the opening duet was gorgeous. I hope for more Handel.

    Said Lois Chaber at 21:09pm on 18th Nov 2011

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