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The Coronation of Poppea

Ph. Lucie Jansch
From 1 to 27 February 2015
Claudio Monteverdi

New production
in coproduction with Opéra National de Paris


Teatro alla Scala Orchestra


Running Time: 3 hours 20 minutes intermission included


Conductor Rinaldo Alessandrini
Staging, sets and lights Robert Wilson
Staging collaborator Tilman Hecker
Set Design collaborator Annick Lavallée-Benny
Choreographic movements collaborator Fani Sarantari
Costumes Jacques Reynaud
Light designer A.J. Weissbard
Dramaturgy Ellen Hammer


Nerone Leonardo Cortellazzi
Poppea / La Fortuna Miah Persson
La Virtù / Ottavia Monica Bacelli
Amore Silvia Frigato
Ottone Sara Mingardo
Lucano, 1° soldato, 2° famigliare, 2° console Luca Dordolo
2° soldato, Liberto, 1° tribuno Furio Zanasi
Arnalta Adriana Di Paola
Nutrice Giuseppe De Vittorio
Seneca Andrea Concetti
Valletto, 1° console Mirko Guadagnini
Drusilla Maria Celeng
Mercurio, Littore, 3° famigliare, 2° tribuno Luigi De Donato
Damigella Monica Piccinini
1° famigliare Andrea Arrivaben

Notes on the performances

With our eyes still focussed on the Hades that is revealed through bands of shadow in Orpheus, the archaic stylization of The Return of Ulysses to His Homeland, Robert Wilson completes the Monteverdi “trilogy” for La Scala with his latest opera: The Coronation of Poppea. It was written in 1642, at the dawn of lyric opera, for one of the first public theatres in Venice. To attract large audiences, the brilliant librettist-protester Gian Francesco Busenello penned a tale of sex and power that is not unlike a modern soap opera, one of those with a huge following. In the history of music, it is the first “historical” title, which speaks about people who really lived (Nero, Seneca) and about a recurring theme in the human condition: the social climber who uses her womanly wiles on a powerful man to separate him from his wife and the good counsellors attempting to dissuade him, so that she could become empress. Once again, the baton of Rinaldo Alessandrini takes on this very long opera, which had to be reconstructed almost from scratch, because Monteverdi left the score incomplete, with bare lines of singing, without harmonies and instrumentation, apart from a few refrains.