Milan, 8 May 2023 – The collaboration between “Riccardo Muti Italian Opera Academy” and Fondazione Prada is renewed. They will present the 2023 and 2025 editions of the project at the Fondazione’s Milan venue: the first one dedicated to Norma by Vincenzo Bellini, while the second one to Don Giovanni by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart.

From 18 to 29 November 2023, the public will be able to experience the entire series of lessons and rehearsals focused on Norma and held by Maestro Riccardo Muti up to his concert. Tickets are available from today on Fondazione Prada’s website.

A new set-up conceived for the Deposito’s premises will host Riccardo Muti who, at the helm of the Orchestra Giovanile Luigi Cherubini, will undertake an educational project addressed to young orchestra conductors and répétiteurs. Selected through an international call by a committee chaired by the Maestro, participants will be between 18 and 35 years old and graduated in Italy or abroad, in Conducting or Piano.

On Saturday, 18 November, the 2023 edition of the Academy will be inaugurated by a lesson concert by Riccardo Muti dedicated to the opera Norma. From 19 to 25 November, it will continue with a series of open rehearsals held by the Maestro at the piano, with the orchestra, the singers and the choir addressed to the young musicians. The project will conclude with two events: on Sunday, 26 November, the final rehearsal of the young conductors presented by Riccardo Muti and on Wednesday, 29 November a concert conducted by the Maestro.

Riccardo Muti’s focus on music education has always been a constant element of his artistic activity. With “Riccardo Muti Italian Opera Academy” he intends to share with young musicians what he learnt from his great masters and to accompany them in the process of interpreting and performing an opera. Moreover, the series of lessons and rehearsals open to the public will give all the occasion to take part in an intense experience of learning in the field of classical music.

As stated by Miuccia Prada, President of Fondazione Prada, “the collaboration with Riccardo Muti and his Academy affirms the centrality of teaching and transferring knowledge between different generations. We are convinced that study is one of the most effective tools for artistic and personal growth. This project is an important educational opportunity, both for the young students who will have the opportunity to work closely with Riccardo Muti and for the public who will be engaged by the Maestro’s generosity and passion and his commitment to spreading and strengthening musical culture.”

As underlined by Riccardo Muti, “I chose Norma by Vincenzo Bellini because I want to highlight this composer’s bel canto which Norma embodies in the most absolute way. This is an extremely complicated opera: it requires peculiar attention to phrasing and the orchestral texture, which are apparently simple but extraordinarily effective in supporting and interweaving with the vocal line. Norma’s sublime and endless melody, which also fascinated Wagner, demands purity and nobility of execution. The conductor’s task is to sublimate the singing without neglecting the orchestral texture. It should not be reduced to mere accompaniment but must intertwine with the voices, which should be given colour and warmth”.

Norma is the eighth of the ten operas by composer Vincenzo Bellini (Catania, 1801 – Puteaux, 1835). It was staged for the first time on 26 December 1831 at Teatro alla Scala in Milan. Despite its unsuccessful debut, from the following performance the opera won over the audience and established itself as the composer’s greatest masterpiece, synthesizing lyricism and drama in perfect balance. The story told by the libretto by Felice Romani (Genoa,1788 – Moneglia, 1865) has three thematic lines: the motif of the priestess who breaks her vows for love, the theme of infanticide, taken directly from Greek tragedy and the character of Medea, and the Celtic Barbaric motif that strikes the collective imagination of the 1830s. Composed in the historical period that Lorenzo Arruga defines as one of “cross fading” between Neoclassicism and Romanticism, Norma is an opera whose language is mainly related to songs to which Bellini entrusts the representation of “the nature of man at the mercy of the passions” communicated “by means of harmony.”

Riccardo Muti Music (RMMUSIC) conceived and created “Riccardo Muti Italian Opera Academy” in 2015. Since then, it has managed its organization in Italy and Japan, where the project has been presented since 2019 in collaboration with the Spring Festival in Tokyo.

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Riccardo Muti Italian Opera Academy

Conductors and répétiteurs: call for applications 2023

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