Castleton 2013: Puccini, ‘Otello,’ ‘Voix’ double bill

Artistic directors Lorin Maazel and Dietlinde Turban-Maazel this week announced the 2013 season of the Castleton Festival, held at their home and artistic campus in Rappahannock County next July 6-23.

The festival’s fifth season will present three new productions: Puccini’s “The Girl of the Golden West,” conducted by Maestro Maazel, which will open the festival on July 6; and a new, unique “La Voix Humaine” (“The Human Voice”) double bill premiering July 13 – which will pair, for the first time, the Poulenc opera and the Cocteau play “La Voix Humaine.”

Maestro Maazel will also bring a production of Verdi’s “Otello” to Castleton on July 13, 19, 26 and 28. It is a former Glyndebourne production, now owned by Castleton, staged by Sir Peter Hal, based on Shakespeare’s play “Othello” with a libretto by Arrigo Boito. “Othello” was Verdi’s penultimate opera, first performed at the Teatro alla Scala, Milan, in 1887. 

Castleton rounds out its new productions in 2013 with “Mostly Mahler” – four symphonic concerts, chamber music, and a song recital featuring works of Mahler, Tchaikovsky, Britten, Weber and a work by an under-25 composer selected by and conducted by Maestro Maazel himself.

Early reports are that Dietlinde Turban-Maazel will be starring in the Cocteau play; Castleton alum Joyce El Khoury will sing the role in the Poulenc opera.

More than a music festival, more than a master class, more than a retreat nestled in the rolling hills of the Virginia Piedmont, the Castleton Festival brings together some 200 staff and residents – both young talent and experienced virtuosos – to present four weeks of extraordinary operas, concerts, theater and recitals.

Among the young performers selected to participate in the 2013 Castleton Festival are 70-plus members of the Castleton Festival Orchestra, whom Maestro Maazel is auditioning this fall, and 40 singing residents of the festival’s C.A.T.S. (Castleton Artists Training Seminar) program, who will spend the summer living, training and rehearsing with Maestro Maazel, soprano Nancy Gustafson, actress Turban-Maazel and opera stars Denyce Graves, James Morris, Neil Shicoff and Rafael Payare, among others.

Subscription packages start at less than $100 and are available online starting Monday, Nov. 26 at 10 a.m.; visit castletonfestival.org or call 866-974-0767. Single tickets go on sale in April.

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