Double Feature: Szymanowski's 'King Roger' and Rossini's 'L'Inganno Felice'

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Thursday, July 30, 2015

Szymanowski's 'King Roger' from the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden. Szymanowski's 'King Roger' from the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden. (Bill Cooper)

Szymanowski is widely regarded as the most important Polish composer after Chopin. "King Roger" — portraying the inherent conflict between spiritual ideals and Dionysian pleasure —is often cited as a true, musical rarity, a genuine masterpiece unaccountably neglected. Also this week, from Venice, Teatro La Fenice presents a rarely-heard one-act gem by Rossini, "L'Inganno Felice."

"King Roger" comes to us this week in its first-ever production from the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden. Syzmanowksi's opera is a brief one, with its three acts totaling only about 80 minutes, and that leaves time for a bit of travel. 

With Szymanowski's drama concluded, World of Opera host Lisa Simeone travels from London to historic La Fenice in Venice, for another rare gem. It's the clever, one-act farce "L'Inganno Felice" ("The Happy Deception") by Gioachino Rossini.


"King Roger"
King Roger II: Mariusz Kwiecien (baritone)
Isabella: Georgia Jarman (soprano)
The Shepherd: Saimir Pirgu (tenor)
Edrisi: Kim Begley (tenor)
Archbishop: Alan Ewing (bass)
Deaconess: Agnes Zwierko (mezzo-soprano)

Royal Opera House; Orchestra and Chorus
Antonio Pappano, conductor


"L'Inganno Felice"
Isabella: Marina Bucciarelli (soprano)
Bertrando: Giorgio Misseri (tenor)
Batone: Filippo Fontana (bass)
Tarabotto: Omar Montanari (baritone)
Ormndo: Marco Filippo Romano (baritone)

La Fenice Orchestra and Chorus
Stefano Montanari conductor

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