The set of Verdi's opera, which dates from 1913, has been restored and can be enjoyed on 22, 24 and 26 November


Auditorio de Tenerife presents Un ballo in maschera (A Masked Ball) by Giuseppe Verdi. This co-production between the Opera of Tenerife and the Teatro Regio di Parma will be shown next week in the Symphony Hall, on 22, 24 and 26 November, at 7:30 p.m. The details of this show were announced by the island director of Culture of the Council of Tenerife, Alejandro Krawietz, the stage director, Marina Bianchi, and the musical director, Alessandro D’Agostini, accompanied by the cast.

Alejandro Krawietz stated that presenting this title “is cause for enormous excitement”. “Over the last few seasons, we have opened up space for contemporary work while maintaining repertoire works like Un ballo in maschera by Verdi. This opera is being programmed for the first time at the Auditorio”, explained the island director, who highlighted the stage design, “restored for the occasion, which dates to 1913, it is a work by the renowned Italian stage designer Giuseppe Carmignani”.

This staging is by the director Marina Bianchi, for whom it is “an honour to be in this opera, which took shape before the pandemic based on the stage design found in the Teatro Regio di Parma”. I have been working and in contact with this world for a long time.  I have worked with great operatic artists. As a result of my love for European tradition and culture, I was commissioned with this management”, stated the maestro who asserts that this is a “story of love and death that, through tradition, will make us dream”.

Alessandro D'Agostini, will be in charge of musical direction and conducting the Tenerife Symphony Orchestra. He agrees with the words of Bianchi and reinforces that “tradition makes us dream”. The maestro stated that the version of the score he chose was the critical one due to its characteristics, especially because of the nuances it offers. “I am grateful for the involvement and work of the soloists, orchestra, choir and all the staff of the Auditorium for making this range of musical colours possible, which the public will note in the three shows” he added.

The team is completed by Michele Cosentino, assistant of Bianchi and head of choreography; Leila Fteita, in charge of the stage design; Lorena Marin, who created the costumes, and Andrea Borelli, in charge of the lighting design for this historic proposal. 

The cast is formed by the tenor José Bros, who plays governor Riccardo; the baritone Sergey Kaydalov, who plays Renato, the governor’s secretary and confidant, and the soprano Monica Zanettin, who embodies and provides the voice of Amelia, the wife of Renato who is in love with Riccardo. Also, the witch and fortune-teller Ulrica will come to life through the contralto Enkelejda Shkoza, while the soprano Sofía Esparza will be Oscar, the governor’s page. 

The bass range signers, Gianni Giuga, Eugenio Di Lieto and Nicolò Donini, will play Silvano, Samuel and Tom, respectively. Lastly, the tenor Blagoj Nacoski will be both a judge and a servant. These voices will be joined by those of the choir Coro Titular Ópera de Tenerife-Intermezzo and the participation of dancers from the dance centre Centro Internacional de Danza de Tenerife.

Premiered at the Teatro Apollo di Roma in 1859, Un ballo in maschera is perhaps one of the most complete and beautiful operas by the Italian genius. The action, which consists of three acts, is based on the assassination by a gentleman from the court in 1792 of King Gustav III of Sweden, an enlightened despot who became an enemy of the nobility due to his reforms. The story has many of the audience’s favourite ingredients: forbidden love, terrifying locations, revenge, deaths and dark and marginal characters like Ulrica.

Subject to censorship on several occasions during the composition process, the artistic proposal of Verdi and Somma went through several versions before it could finally be premiered after circumventing the idea of an assassination in a European kingdom by moving the setting of the story to colonial Boston and changing the name of the characters. 

Previously, with the same historical inspiration, in 1833 the writer Eugène Scribe prepared the libretto of a historic opera for the musician Daniel François Esprit Auber, entitled Gustave III ou Le Bal masqué (Gustave III or the Masked Ball), which kept some names of real historical characters in the midst of a plot in which the rest of the content is imagined. Ten years later, with the same plot, Salvatore Cammarano wrote the text of the opera Il reggente by Mercadante. The opera by Verdi known as “the Boston story” is the most well-known and performed version.

The tickets are available on the website, at the auditorium's box office or by dialling the phone number 902 317 327 from Monday to Friday from 10:00 a.m. to 05:00 p.m., Saturdays from 10:00 a.m. to 02:00 p.m. Tickets for the under 30s cost just 5 euros and there are also special discounts for students, unemployed and large families.