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Adela Zaharia

Donizetti L’Elisir d’Amore

From 28 May TO 01 June 2020
Staatsoper Unter den Linden - Berlin
Program

Donizetti : L’Elisir d’Amore 130 mn

Sung in : Italian
Cast
  • Conductor
    Massimo Zanetti
  • Director
    Percy Adlon
  • Performers
    Nemorino: Atalla Ayan
    Adina: Adela Zaharia
    Belcore: Adam Kutny
    Dulcamara: Grigory Shkarupa
Details on the Performance

Love potions are all the rage in literature: just think of the medieval story of Tristan and Isolde, which – over 30 years before Wagner’s opera – also found its way into Donizetti’s work. Here, the somewhat simple-minded Nemorino is driven to speed up his advances to his cherished Adina by means of a magic potion offered to him by the quack doctor Dulcamara.

However, as in Tristan and Isolde, taking the potion does not have the intended effect. When Nemorino meets Adina in a state of drunkenness – the intoxicating effect of the potion owing to its high-proof content – Adina turns away angrily and decides to marry the dashing soldier Belcore. It takes a second bottle of »love potion« and plenty of fortune for Nemorino and Adina to come together. In the end, however, the whole village community is convinced of the elixir’s effect. With the delightful naivety of his characters, Donizetti and his librettist Felice Romani take superstition and credulity for a ride in a lovingly tender manner. The music, which is said to have been written in just three weeks, also allows the protagonists touching, intimate moments, not least in the famous aria »Una furtiva lagrima«. The inexhaustible richness of its melodies makes »L’elisir d’amore« one of Donizetti’s most popular stage works, which now returns to the Staatsoper repertoire after a long break.

  • Venue Info
  • Seating Plan
  • Synopsis

Staatsoper Unter den Linden - Berlin Location Unter den Linden 7 - 10117 Berlin Allemagne

The Venue's History in few words …

When the opera house situated on the Lindenallee was inaugurated in 1742, Frederick the Great intended to turn it into the cultural symbol of his ideal capital, the hub of the "Forum Fridericianum." This "enchanted palace," as the enlightened despot called it, is one of the rare vestiges of the old city still visible today, and a large part of German musics cultural heritage is contained within its walls. The Berlin Staatskapelle, for example, the orchestra connected with the opera, was founded in 1570 and the list of its permanent conductors includes names such as those of Meyerbeer, Mendelssohn, Richard Strauss, Furtwangler, Klemperer and Karajan! During the 19th century, the Berlin Opera remained a royal opera, where Weber's FREISCHUTZ was premiered. The activities of the Berlin Staatskapelle developed under Spontini's responsability, the first "Preussischer Generalmusikdirektor," ever appointed. This goes to show the importance of the ensemble in German musical life at that time, an importance which constantly grew, especially after the "Sinfonie-Soireen" were created in 1842, open to the public by subscription.

In 1919, the Royal Opera became a state opera, and played an active role in the exhuberant artistic activity that rocked Germany during the twenties: Erich Kleiber presented Berg's WOZZECK and popular harmonies of composers such as Kurt Weill resounded in this shrine of the lyrical repertoire, until Nazism cut short a period of intense creativity. During the war, Karajan forged his reputation in the theatre, until bombs destroyed the building, partially in 1941, and completely in 1945.

Because of its geographical situation, the Staatsoper became, in 1949, the Opera of East Berlin. In 1955, the East German administration reinstalled the company in its illustrious hall, rebuilt along the original plans, and one could soon applaud singers such as Peter Schreier and Theo Adam on its stage, musicians who helped create a truly Eastern German singing tradition.

Since the German reunification, the institution has been completely reorganized, especially under the impetus of Daniel Barenboim, who became its General Music Director in 1992. Proud of its impressive history, the present day Opera Unter den Linden hardly neglects its baroque beginnings, and it henceforth counts amongst those that most often produce pre-Mozartian lyrical works, such as CLEOPATRA E CESARE by Graun which opened the Opera's first season in 1742. But the house also commissions works by Pierre Boulez, while defending the traditional repertoire, in which Wagner occupies a large place. By thus juxtaposing tradition and innovation, the Opera Unter den Linden has become one of the institutions most representative of Berlin's new dynamism.

Staatsoper Unter den Linden

The seating plan is given as an indication and has no contractual value.
The division of categories may differ depending on shows and dates.

Synopsis

L’Elisir d’Amore

This is a comic opera in two acts, written by the Italian composer Gaetano Donizetti. It was written in only six weeks and was instantly popular. Between 1838 and 1848 it was regularly the most performed opera in Italy. L'elixir d'amore premiered on 12th May 1832 in Milan at the Teatro della Canobbiana.

It is still the most performed of Donizetti's operas and it comes 13th on the list of most performed operas worldwide. It has been recorded numerous times.
The opera contains 'Una furtiva lagrima'; a popular tenor aria sung by the main two characters Adina and Nemorino.

HISTORY
The story of L'elixir d'amore takes place in a small village in the Basque Country, Spain, towards the end of the eighteenth century.

Act 1
Nemorino is a poor peasant who is in love with a beautiful landowner called Adina. He hopes that a magic potion will gain Adina's love. Belcore, a sergeant, arrives and tries to court Adina. This unsettles Nemorino who decides to declare his love for Adina, who rejects him. Dulcamara, a medicine man, arrives and Nemorino decides to buy a love potion from him. Dulcamara tells Nemorino that the potion wont work for twenty four hours, giving him enough time to escape before Nemorino discovers that it has not worked. After taking some of the potion, Nemorino meets Adina and acts indifferently, which annoys Adina. Belcore proposed to Adina, who agrees to marry him in six days time. However, the following day Belcore discovers that his regiment must leave the next day, and so Adina promises to marry him before he leaves and invites everyone to the upcoming wedding.

Act 2
Belcore and Adina are waiting to sign the official marriage contract but Adina is annoyed that Nemorino has not attended. Dulcamara is there and Nemorino finds him, begging for another potion that is stronger as he believes he has lost Adina. However, since Nemorino has no money to pay him, Dulcamara refuses to give him any potion and leaves. Adina has put off signing the marriage contract and Belcore emerges wondering why she has postponed it. He discoverd Nemorino and asks why he looks miserable. Nemorino replies that he needs money, and Belcore persuades him to sign a contract and join the military, for which Nemorino receives some money. Rumours spread that Nemorino's uncle has just died leaving him a fortune. Nemorino returns to the village after purchasing another love potion, and is greeted by friendly women. This convinces him that the potion has worked. Adina sees Nemorino and asks Dulcamara why he is so popular. On explaining Nemorino's desperation to win over the attention of a women, Adina realises his sincerity and that she loves him.

MAIN ROLES
Nemorino, a peasant in love with Adina, tenor
Adina, a wealthy landowner, soprano
Belcore, a sergeant, baritone
Dr Dulcamara, a medicine man, bass
Giannetta, Adina's friend, soprano

Staatsoper Unter den Linden

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