Wednesday, October 2, 2013

[Festival] 2013 Daegu International Opera Festival

Daegu International Opera Festival(DIOF) is the representative music festival in Korea that Daegu citizens love and the largest International Opera Festival of Asia. Spectacular growth has been repeated since 2003 and according to the evaluation results of Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism Government Support Project, it took the top spot in the field of music in 2006 and also received the best grade in 2010 and has been recognized as the best festival in Korea. 

Until now, presenting various operas from all over the world by taking advantage of domestic and international high-level cultural infrastructure, it plays a cultural hub for the Asian Performing Art and its international stature is growing significantly by advancing to the European global theaters. In 2009, it has received the attention of the world by launching Korean vocalists and producers into Germany. We advanced into China in 2010 and Germany in 2011, and received honorable mentions from world opera lovers and presses by performing Made-in-Daegu opera at the one of the best opera festivals in the world ‘Turkey Aspendos International Opera & Ballet Festival’in 2012. Also May 2013, DIOF went to Poland to staged and received great interest exhibited by early sold-out seats. DIOF is scheduled to meet audiences on America and Turkey in 2014, Italy and Germany in 2015, Poland again in 2016. Also it plans to continue to expand overseas every year. 
DIOF takes lead as the center of Asian Opera by showing excellent opera production capacity and will continue to move forward towards globalization of Korean Opera through presenting a vision into Europe.


◇ Main Opera

G.VERDI, La Forza Del Destino

DIOF Organizing Committee, Korea
Oct. 4(Fri.) 7:30pm - 5(Sat.) 3pm | Daegu Opera House
R 70,000 / S 50,000 / A 30,000 / B 20,000 / C 10,000
The best opera, with outstanding audience attentionin 2013 which all the top Korean singers participated in. The peak of Verdi’s arts describing tragic lives of protagonists entangled in the wheel of fortune!
‘After Act I, the loud applause never stopped. Verdi would be proud to have to appear on the stage whenever every act and scene ends.
by Verdi, the opening opera of the 11th Daegu International Opera Festival! This opera, which shows the tragic Alvaro happening to kill a father of his lover, Leonora, and Carlo, her brother chasing them, receives love with a prelude recognized as one of the most perfect works of Verdi, effective chorus and heartfelt arias. Based on the tragic story, dramatic orchestra and dramatic singers are essential to make the opera perfect. So singers loved not only in Korea but also all over the world, including Lee Jungwon, a tenor; Lim Saekyung, a soprano who attracted attention in the La Scala; Lee Hwayoung, a soprano who gained high praise with ‘brilliant techniques and graceful Leonora’; Ha Seokbe, a tenor who swept the top three concours in the worldand Woo Juho and Matteo Suk, the top baritones the top baritones in this era joined, so it gained great attention even before the opening of the festival.
“Peace, please… oh, god, please give us peace!”

Leonora, a daughter of the Marquis of Calatrava, and Alvaro, her lover and a descendant of the Inca Empire, happen to kill the Marquis due to a pistol’ being discharged by accident when they run from their families, who are against their relationship. They are separated accidentally and Carlo, Leonora’s brother, starts tracing them for revenge. Leonora, suffering from a harsh curse of destiny, retires to hermitage in the cave in the mountain with help of afather superior. Meanwhile, Alvaro joins the army and saves Carlo’s life by accident, so they become best friends without knowing each other’s identity. However, Carlo discovers a portrait of Leonora inside Alvaro’s luggage and challenges him to a duel. After the first duel is finished, whose outcome remains undecided, and 5 years later, Carlo traces Alvaro and challenges him who became a monk to a duel again. Alvaro, who wins the duel knocks on a cave where a monk can stay for dying Carlo, and in that place, he dramatically meets Leonora again. Leonora, running to her brother who is almost dying, is stabbed and dies under the prayers of the father superior by saying to Alvaro cursing his destiny that he should be redeemed with heartfelt repentance.


The Salerno Theater, Italy

Oct. 10(Thu.) 7:30pm / 12(Sat.) 3pm | Daegu Opera House
R 70,000 / S 50,000 / A 30,000 / B 20,000 / C 10,000

Golden opportunity to meet the great conductor of full of passion, 'Daniel Oren'!
A one-day tragedy with flowering arias and melody, and well-organized composition.

Daniel Oren who is highly acclaimed at the world for his passionate conducting, with world-class singers who chosen by him and Salerno Verdi Theater of Italy adorn the festival grandly. Salerno Verdi Theater, making an opera interacting agreement with DIOF, is a national theater that adds more reputation after Daniel Oren's proceeding as an artistic director. It'll be an opportunity not to be lost because visiting of local theater of Italy which is the center of world opera and super opera stars together is rare. , one of representative works of Giacomo Puccini, a composer with genius sense, and famous for beautiful arias and duets, is a work describing a tragedy between two lovers and one man who tries to break their relationship. Fully organized stories and thrilling development described in just one day steals the heart of the audience.
‘Go, Tosca! You are Scarpia’s. When the day dawns,
one will be on the scaffold and one woman will be held in my arms!’
Angelotti, hiding in the Catholic church after escaping from imprisonment due to antigovernment suspicion, meets Cavaradossi, a painter and his old friend, and hides himself in his friend’s country house. Scarpia, a police commissioner, appears noisily in the Catholic church due to victory of the war and finds the whereabouts of a prison breaker. As he becomes aware that the person hiding Angelotti is a lover of Tosca, he finds Cavaradossi by using Tosca’s jealousy and tortures him. At the moment, defeat in the war is announced and an angry Scarpia sends a cheering Cavaradossi to the scaffold. Scarpia tries to violate Tosca with the excuse that he will save Cavaradossi’s life by shooting blanks, but he dies by being stabbed from the knife Tosca hides. Tosca, going to the scaffold for Cavaradossi tells him to pretend to die when blanks are fired. After execution by firing squad, Tosca finds Cavaradossi actually dead and screams desperately. Subordinates discovering the dead body of Scarpia come to catch Tosca, but she throws herself from the rampart telling them she will meet Scarpia in hell.

KIM SEONG JAE, Chungna Hill

Daegu Opera House, Korea / Deagu City Opera, Korea
Oct. 18(Fri.) 7:30pm - 19(Sat.) 3pm | Daegu Opera House
R 70,000 / S 50,000 / A 30,000 / B 20,000 / C 10,000

A story of Daegu musicians proposes a direction of Korean-made opera!
, newly-born expecting the birth of Korean masterpiece opera.
‘The audience was moved to tears as if they faced their own memories and stories on the stage’
, Korean-made opera is newly created by Jang Sudong, one of prominent opera directors in Korea. Right after the premiere as the opening of the festival, this opera swamped with inquiries about record production and its encore, and received favorable comments from the music industry and interest from citizens, is produced by DIOF Organizing Committee through a composition contest at the national level. This work re-made in collaboration between Daegu Opera House and Daegu City Opera in 2013, improves the completeness through music supplementation and revision of the script and new casting. The story which described the sad and beautiful story of Daegu-born composers including Park Taejoon, based on familiar melody whose motif was from ‘Thinking of My Friend’, gained great comments both from the audience and critics, and it was evaluated that it opened a new prospect in the fields of Korean-made opera.
“Love, my love, please do not leave me.
If you leave me, no star of the universe will twinkle…”
Park Taejoon discovers the news of An Iktae’s death, who was his friend in early life, from the newspaper. Iktae appears in front of Taejoon, who is lost in the memories of his friends in his early days, like an illusion, and they sing as in the old days when they used to study music together. Taejoon remembers the memory of Chungna Hill and Yoo Inkyung, his first love who he has forgotten for a long time, reminiscences of organizing orchestra for a concert tour and teaching children Korean language. They shared their fresh first love but went to study abroad separately, promising to meet in later days. He met her the following year, but she showed clear signs of illness, so he became sad in realizing that an eternal farewell would be not long. Back to reality for a while, Taejoon recalls the time he first met Kim Bongryoel, his wife and cousin of Lee Eunsang. At that time, he had a conflict between Bongryoel in proposing to set the song, ‘Thinking of My Friend’ composed by him to her poem, and Inkyung, his first love. One snowy winter day, Taejoon wakes up from a dream shedding tears in front of the Inkyung’s tomb and sings 'Thinking of My Friend', thinking of the Inkyung he will never forget.

G.VERDI, Don Carlo

Korea National Opera
Oct. 25(Fri.) 7:30pm - 26(Sat.) 3pm | Deagu Opera House
R 70,000 / S 50,000 / A 30,000 / B 20,000 / C 10,000

Full-psychological drama of Verdi prepared by Korea’s top brand,
National Opera.
The last opera of Philip Kang, a bass with a national treasure,entering Bayreuth for the first time as Asian!
Korea National Opera, having received great praise from the international stage, visits Daegu with , which has got attention due to effective stage management and musical completion. This opera is the best human psychology-describing masterpiece showing precisely the love and betrayal, and misunderstanding and tragedy of the five main characters, including Filippo II, absolute monarchy in Spain who is marrying Elizabetta, a fiance of his son; Don Carlo, an unfortunate prince; Rodrigo, his friend and loyalist, and Eboli, who is a lover of the king but loves the prince. This opera is also considered as a golden opportunity which provides a ‘feast of arias’ in one place, because individual parts of all main characters are quite balanced, and they have at least one perfect aria each. Singers with the best talent, including Philip Kang, a bass, who was the first Asian to enter Bayreuth in Germany and well known as a ‘legend’, participate and raise the prestige of the festival even more.
“She has never loved me!… Her sad face is still vivid in my white head.
If a crown gives me an energy, it can help me read the mind of people!”
Filippo II, absolute monarchy in Spain marries Elizabetta, a fiance of Prince Carlo for peace with France. Desperate Carlo decides to make an effort for independence of Flandre with Rodrigo, his friend. Carlo pleads with the king to have mercy upon the Flandre people and is refused, so he tried to threaten the king with a sword and be arrested in. Meanwhile, the Grand Inquisitor appears in front of the king in sorrow because of the betrayal of his son and not being loved by his young wife, and says he should remove Rodrigo who encourages Carlo. The king becomes tormented by the reality that he can lose his retainer who give him honest advice. Rodrigo visits the imprisoned Carlo, says he will be responsible for treason and dies from a gun-shot by an assassin. Carlo is acquitted and meets Elizabetta in a monastery and says good-bye. When the king sees and it and tries to arrest Carlo in angry, Carlo Ⅴ, grandfather of Carlo is shown and brings Carlo to the his tomb.

R.WAGNER, Tannhauser

Nov. 1(Fri.) 7:30pm / 3(Sun.) 2pm | Daegu Opera House
R 70,000 / S 50,000 / A 30,000 / B 20,000 / C 10,000
The festival reaches the climax by the most popular opera of Wagner!
Familiar melodies from unfamiliar Wagner···an Opera for Wagner beginners

The second Wagner’s opera of the DIOF, ! This opera is based on the main motif of the legend of Tannhäuser who historically existed, about a story of Tannhäuser, a knight, who fell into temptation of Venus, a symbol of physical pleasure, who is saved by the pure love of Elizabeth. Operas of Wagner, written and composed himself, are famous for consistency between music, story and pronunciation. Particularly, is the work most beloved by 'Wagnerians'. This also has beautiful and romantic songs including ‘Entry of the Guests’, ‘Song of the Evening Star’ and ‘Pilgrim’s Chorus’, so it is called an introduction opera to Wagner. Karlsruhe National Theater in Germany which has performed many of Wagner’s works and collected all Wagnerians in Daegu as performance of before the 200th anniversary of the birth of Wagner, visits Daegu with their top singers.
“Never may I sully that fountain with impure thoughts!
Love must be through your heart, not your lips.”
“My burning thirst I must assuage by confidently pressing my lips to it!”
Tannhäuser, a knight and a minnesinger, becomes sick of the physical pleasures provided by Venus and comes back to his home. He receives welcome from Elizabeth who has shared pure love with him and participates in a singing contest in the town. Unlike other participants who sing about noble love, Tannhäuser happens to confess he admired physical love and was with Venus. People try to drive him out but Elizabeth appeals for an opportunity of salvation, so Tannhäuser goes on a pilgrimage to Rome. After some time has gone by, he is not found among pilgrims coming back. Elizabeth avoids Wolfram staying with her and continues praying. Tannhäuser finally comes back to the town without being redeemed and meets Wolfram, and Venus appears in front of him saying he will come back to the world of pleasures. Wolfram shouts the name of Elizabeth in the back of Tannhäuser who is just about to approach Venus, and Venus disappears again. Finally, Tannhäuser realizes he is saved by the sacrifice of Elizabeth. A funeral precession for Elizabeth is held in the town, and Tannhäuser approaches her coffin, falls there and dies.

◇ Overseas Expansion Opera

G.BIZET, Carmen

Wroclaw Opera Theater, Poland / DIOF Organizing Committee, Korea
May 12(Sun.) 5pm | Wroclaw Opera Theater, Poland
with fatal attraction flew from Korea, captivates Poland.
Korean-opera-wave in the world proved as sell-out and standing ovation
The opera , becoming a legend through four-year consecutive overseas expansion, heats up Poland. Directed by Adam Frontczak of and conducted by Lee Dongsin, a deputy conductor of Busan Philharmonic Orchestra, this opera received great interest exhibited by early sold-out seats and leaflets quickly out of stock. started at 5pm on May 12th as of local time and received a standing ovation from the Pole audience filling all the 800 seats. Paik Jaeeun, a representative mezzo soprano in Korea and Chung Hoyoon, a tenor, taking an active part focusing on the European stage, played leading roles, and Kim Jeonga, a soprano, and Bang Sungtaek, a baritone, also showed their best singing performances through understanding their characters perfectly, which displayed the high ability of Korean singers. The success of  in Daegu has spread through word of mouth, and Poznan, the third city in Poland, has requested mutual interchange, so DIOFoc is planned to go to Poland again in 2016.
“Love is a free bird, so no one can tame it. If you try to catch it, it flies away
and if you try to be free from it, it will never let you go…”
Carmen, a gypsy woman with fatal magnetism attracts Don José, a blunt non-commissioned officer. Don José, attracted to her, release Carmen who has been arrested for fighting with her colleague, and becomes imprisoned. He even violates returning to his unit, becomes a deserter to be with Carmen, and he comes to be traced on charge of violence to his senior. After some time has gone by, Micaëla, Don Jose‘s finance, appears in front of Don José, who becomes tired of a wandering life, and says his mother is seriously sick, so he returns to his home. However, Don José never forgets Carmen, so he comes back to her, but he finds her with Escamillo, a famous bullfighter. She finally says good-bye to Don José, so he becomes very upset and stabs her. He screams in sorrow and kills himself as well.

Festival Overview

  1. | Title | The 11th Daegu International Opera Festival
  2. | Period | Oct. 4 to Nov. 4, 2013 (32 days)
  3. | Theme | Premiere
  4. | Venue | Daegu Opera House

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