Pinchgut 2015: Tragedy And Comedy – Bookings Open


Hadleigh Adams will play Bajazet. Image Keith Saunders supplied by Pinchgut Opera
Hadleigh Adams will play Bajazet. Image Keith Saunders supplied by Pinchgut Opera

Pinchgut Opera continues its 2014 programming trend in 2015, once again presenting two rarely heard masterpieces of drama and comedy at Sydney’s City Recital Hall.

Their winter offering (July 4,5,7 and 8) is Vivaldi’s Bazajet (RV 703), a tragedia per musica in 3 acts, with libretto by Agostino Piovene. The musical content comprises Vivaldi’s own arias dedicated to this libretto as well as those written by his colleagues Johann Adolph Hasse, Geminiano Giacomelli, Nicola Porpora and Riccardo Broschi the brother of Carlo Broschi, who performed as Farinelli. Bazajet, also known as Il Tamerlano premiered in Verona in 1735. 

Pinchgut Opera’s presentation of this intense drama is a southern hemisphere premiere and sees a return to Sydney of baritone Hadleigh Adams in the title role. Adams is a second-year Adler Fellow with San Francisco Opera and a graduate of their 2012 Merola Opera Programme. The New Zealand born singer thrilled Pinchgut fans in 2012 with his performance as the twin Pollux in Rameau’s Castor and Pollux.

Joining Adams in the cast are Christopher Lowrey as Tamerlano, Helen Sherman as Irene, Emily Edmonds as Asteria and Russell Harcourt as Andronico. The production will be conducted by Erin Helyard and directed by Thomas de Mallet Burgess. The opera contains the famous aria Sposa son disprezzata (I am wife and I am scorned) written by Giacomelli.

Erin Helyard returns in December 2015 (3,5,6,and 8) to conduct the Australian premiere of Grétry’s comic 3-act masterpiece L’Amant Jaloux (The Jealous Lover). With libretto by Irish playwright Thomas Hale, it was first performed in Versailles in 1778. The team for this presentation gathers members from Pinchgut’s acclaimed production of Giasone, including director Chas Rader-Schieber with Celeste Lazarenko as Léonore, Andrew Goodwin as Florival and David Greco as Lopez, joined by Ed Lyon as Don Alonze and Margaret Plummer as Jacinte.

Founded on a tradition of comic operas shared by Mozart, L’Amant Jaloux has similarities with The Marriage of Figaro and is written in a similar light-hearted vein. Grétry’s melodies and his skill in ensemble writing were greatly admired. Its premiere was, according to Grétry “a brilliant success” and was “to Hale and to myself a delicious moment.” 

Maintaining Pinchgut Opera’s mission, Co-Artistic Director, Erin Helyard says:”Pinchgut’s 2015 season consolidates and continues our vision to bring to audiences glorious, unusual operatic experiences combining passion, technical and scholarly excellence.”

Bookings for Pinchgut 2015 are open at or by calling (02) 8256 2222 or in person at No 2 Angel Place, Sydney. 


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