Det Kongelige Teater

Annabel Arden directs new Aida at the Royal Danish Opera

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Verdi's magnificent and intimate work about love in the shadow of war returns to the Copenhagen Opera House in a new version directed by Annabel Arden and conducted by Paolo Carignani.

The Royal Danish Opera has in recent seasons presented several new productions of Verdi’s operas. Now, the time has come to present his famous operatic work, Aida.

Like many of Verdi’s operas, Aida has both a political and personal narrative. This new staging by British director Annabel Arden highlights the personal story of the captured Aida, who falls in love with her enemy.

"I am interested in the women. In all operas there are these great, wonderful roles for women. And they sing absolutely powerfully with their big voices. In the operas they have power, yet they have no power. Even Amneris, the princess of Egypt who is to inherit the throne from her father, is ultimately powerless. The priesthood, a truly oppressive force, takes the power from Amneris,” says Annabel Arden.

The new production takes place in a once lavish and decadent palace, ruined by corruption and political decay, which is now the headquarters of a warring and oppressive regime. Here, prisoner of war Aida suffers in foreign captivity as one of the many unintended victims of the war. Through song, she brings light to Verdi’s fateful story of war, oppression, and love.

"We are dealing with a war between two neighboring countries located on a huge continent. When you're working with theatre, it's inevitable not to look at the world around you and be inspired by concrete images. But in this staging I will describe the war in a symbolic way. Through an angle that not only sees the destruction of war as tanks and war machines, but also as the destruction of land, landscapes, climate, and ecosystems,” Annabel Arden says.

The Royal Danish Theatre’s principal guest conductor, Paolo Carignani, who has recently directed Aida at The Met, leads an international team of singers, the Royal Danish Orchestra, and the Royal Danish Opera Chorus through the many musical highlights of Verdi’s opera.

The title role of Aida is sung by Miriam Clark and Anna Nechaeva; her rival, Amneris, is sung alternately by Raehann Bryce-Davis and Nora Sourouzian, and the object of their love, Radames, is sung by Samuele Simoncini and Hovhannes Ayvazyan. In addition, Musa Ngqungwana, Jens Søndergaard, Sir Willard White, Jacques-Greg Belobo, Byung Gil Kim, Kyungil Ko, Gisela Stille, and Cecilia Hjortsberg are amongst the cast.

Aida will be sung in Italian with Danish surtitles.

Read more about Aida HERE Press images are available HERE

For interview or press coverage appointments, please contact Press Officer Louise Pedersen at +45 40530035 or lope@kglteater.dk

FACTS ABOUT AIDA:
Aida: Miriam Clark / Anna Nechaeva
Amneris: Raehann Bryce-Davis / Nora Sourouzian
Radames: Samuele Simoncini / Hovhannes Ayvazyan
Amonasro: Musa Ngqungwana / Jens Søndergaard
Ramfis: Byung Gil Kim / Kyungil Ko
Il Re: Sir Willard White / Jacques-Greg Belobo
Temple singer: Gisela Stille / Cecilia Hjortsberg
The Royal Danish Opera Chorus
The Royal Danish Orchestra

Director: Annabel Arden
Conductor: Paolo Carignani
Conductor: Hossein Pishkar
Assistant Conductor: Thomas Bagwell
Associate and Movement director: Angelo Smimmo
Choreographer: Theo Clinkard
Set designer: Merle Hensel
Costume idea: Christina Cunningham
Costume designer: Gabrielle Dalton
Light design: Lee Curran
Video design: Will Duke
In the video content in the production the images of the stone heads in the production are the work of stone carver Emily Young photographed by Angelo Plantamura. 

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