Monteverdi’s final masterpiece is often described as his greatest achievement, combining mythic and very human themes. ETO’s production is inspired by Stalin’s Russia and was originally directed by James Conway in a co-production with the Royal College of Music in November 2012.
Starring mezzo-soprano Helen Sherman as Nero and soprano Paula Sides as Poppea, with young Polish countertenor Michal Czerniawski in the role of Ottone. The revival director this autumn is Oliver Platt; the Old Street Band is conducted by Michael Rosewell.
One of the first operas to use historical events and people, 'The Coronation of Poppea' is a rich, complex and thoroughly modern work; a world populated by ruthless and all-too-human characters, where lust and ambition ultimately triumph over virtue. It tells the story of Nero’s infatuation with the young and beautiful Poppea as she tries to make him divorce his wife Ottavia and take her as his new queen and empress of Rome.
(Note: on Wed Oct 9, a pre-show talk at 6.30pm. One of three Venetian Revival production, sung in English; touring with a live period orchestra. Running time: Two hours 40 minutes.)