A Winter Guide to Music, Opera and Ballet Around the Globe

A Winter Guide to Music, Opera and Ballet Around the Globe


“Il Trittico,” Bavarian State Opera

Select dates, Dec. 17-Jan. 1

Kirill Petrenko, the general music director, conducts his first Puccini opera in a staging by the Dutch director Lotte de Beer. The production is the first time that “Il Trittico” — a trilogy of one-act operas shadowing the passage from hell to heaven — will be performed in the original Italian in Munich. The celebrated baritone Ambrogio Maestri makes his debut as the title character of “Gianni Schicchi,” the second installment, while the soprano Ermonela Jaho returns to a signature role in “Suor Angelica.”


A rehearsal for “Nureyev,” a new ballet, at the Bolshoi Theater in Moscow.

D. Yusupov


“Götterdämmerung,” Hong Kong Philharmonic

Jan. 18, 21

The Hong Kong Philharmonic performs the final installment of a “Ring” cycle that began in 2015. Jaap van Zweden, the music director, leads a cast including the tenor Daniel Brenna as the antihero Siegfried and the soprano Gun-Brit Barkmin as Brünnhilde, daughter of the father of the gods. The mezzo Michelle DeYoung, who sang in “Das Rheingold,” takes on the role of Brünnhilde’s sister, Waltraute, while the bass Eric Halfvarson steps in to replace Mikhail Petrenko as the evil Hagen.


“Idomeneo,” Opernhaus Zurich

Select dates, Feb. 4-March 2

The lakeside opera house presents Mozart’s Dramma per musica in three acts. Set at the end of the Trojan War, the story tells of the romantic triangle among two princesses and Idamante — son of Idomeneo, king of Crete — and how he escapes being sacrificed to the gods. The soprano Hanna-Elisabeth Müller makes her house debut as Princess Ilia, while the tenor Joseph Kaiser, who played Tamino in Kenneth Branagh’s 2007 film version of “The Magic Flute,” sings the title role. The early music specialist Giovanni Antonini conducts the Orchestra La Scintilla.


“Nureyev,” Bolshoi Theater

Dec. 9-10

A new ballet about the life of the Soviet-born dancer Rudolf Khametovich Nureyev is scheduled to finally take the stage. “Nureyev” was postponed at the last minute in July, and its librettist, director and designer, Kirill Serebrennikov, remains under house arrest, accused of embezzling state funds. The show’s exploration of Nureyev’s homosexuality also stirred up controversy given Russian laws against “gay propaganda.” The young Russian composer Ilya Demutsky provides music, while the San Francisco-based Yuri Possokhov presides over choreography.


Deutsches Symphonie-Orchester Berlin, Philharmonie

Jan. 10

The Japanese-born composer Dai Fujikura unveils his Cello Concerto, described by The New York Times last year as “overtly seductive,” in a new version for large orchestra. The international soloist Jan Vogler performs the part originally conceived for Katinka Kleijn, while Manfred Honeck conducts. The program also includes Debussy’s “Six Épigraphes Antiques,” a four-hand piano suite posthumously scored for orchestra by the American composer Alan Fletcher, and Beethoven’s Seventh Symphony.


“Messiah,” Southbank Center

Dec. 15

In London, where the German-born Handel established himself as the country’s leading composer in the early 18th century, the Southbank Center evokes his most famous oratorio’s historic origins with period costumes and a candlelit setting. The Mozart Festival Orchestra, which specializes in baroque and classical repertoire, joins the City of London Choir under the baton of Hilary Davan Wetton. The quartet of soloists includes the soprano Jennifer France and the baritone George Humphreys.

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