The Prague National Theatre, which will be visiting Savonlinna in the summer of 2024, will perform key works of Czech opera at a concert in Olavinlinna on Wednesday 31 July 2024. The ensemble of soloists from Prague will be magnificently complemented at the concert by Karita Mattila, one of the most important Janáček sopranos of her generation, singing the dramatic role of Kostelnička Buryjovka in Jenůfa for the first time in Finland. Mattila will also make her operatic debut next summer at the Opera Festival Wagner’s Lohengrin.
‘In the summer of 2020, the Opera Festival scheduled two sold-out gala concerts with Karita, but they had to be cancelled owing to the Covid pandemic. It’s wonderful that we can finally welcome Karita for her first opera role in Savonlinna this summer, and also as a soloist at the Prague National Theatre concert. Karita is the most important interpreter of Janáček’s operatic roles today and we will hear her interpretation of Kostelnička Buryjovka in Jenůfa for the first time in Finland’, says Ville Matvejeff, artistic director of the Opera Festival.
‘Karita’s career is amazing and exceptional. It has lasted more than 40 years. She continues to reinvent herself, both with new works and roles (including Clytemnestra in Elektra) and by swapping roles in operas close to her heart. Examples include Herodias in Salome and Ortrud and the Kostelnička in Savonlinna next summer. At the same time, she continues to sing her celebrated roles, such as Emilia Marty in Janáček’s The Makropulos Affair, most recently at the Paris Opera just a few weeks ago. This season, Karita will also appear at major opera houses in London and Rome’, adds Matvejeff.
The prestigious and acclaimed Prague National Theatre, one of the largest opera companies in Europe, will visit the Savonlinna Opera Festival in the summer of 2024. Next year will be a year of celebration for Czech music, marking the 200th anniversary of the birth of Bedřich Smetana, the father of Czech classical music.
The Prague National Theatre will present two famous Czech grand operas, Smetana’s The Bartered Bride and Leoš Janáček’s Káťa Kabanová. The line-up is complemented in the best possible way by a concert of Czech opera, starring soprano legend Karita Mattila. The first half of the concert features a cross-section of the extensive operatic output of the most important Czech opera composers, Bedřich Smetana, Antonín Dvořák and Leoš Janáček. After the interval we shall hear the entire second act of Janáček’s opera Jenůfa .
The Grand Opera Concert will be conducted by Robert Jindra, music director of the Prague National Theatre. Alongside Karita Mattila in the title role of Jenůfa will be the Prague National Theatre’s star soprano Alžběta Poláčková. Internationally renowned tenors Pavel Černoch and Aleš Briscein complete the solo quartet in Jenůfa. In addition to Černoch and Briscein, the soloists in the first half will include baritone Svatopluk Sem, soprano Kateřina Kněžíková and bass Zdeněk Plech.
Advance ticket sales for Opera Festival members starts from 12.00 on Monday 6 November.
General ticket sales starts from 9 am on Friday 10 November.
More information here.
Ville Matvejeff, Artistic Director
Sonja Eiramo, Head of Marketing Communications