Great opera season coming up

This year’s Opera season is underway with the Southern Opera performance, Blooming Opera, arias with a floral theme, followed by a performance of Gianni Schicchi, a one act comedic opera by Puccini. Gianni Schicchi was recently directed in Los Angeles by Woody Allen in what Opera News described as a triumph. The Radio New Zealand reviewer described Southern Opera’s version in equally glowing terms, calling it engaging and entertaining, with virtuoso acting, perfect casting and great pacing. Next up is The Magic Flute in October.

For those who missed it, the library has a DVD and CDs of Gianni Schicchi . The DVD was recorded in 2004 at the Glyndbourne Opera House and the CDs feature Mirella Freni, Roberto Alagna, and Leo Nucci or Miriam Gauci, Mabel Prelstein and Yordy Ramira under the baton of Alexander Rahbari. The Opera was originally part of a trilogy of one act operas know as Il Trittico, although they are apparently rarely performed together. We also have CDs and a DVD of the whole thing.

Also on offer this year are the HD Met Opera screenings at the Rialto, with some fantastic offerings including, Salome featuring Karit Mattila, Dr Atomic, Le Damnation de Faust, La Rondine, Thais, Orpheo ed Euridice, Lucia di Lammermoor, Madame Butterly, La Somnambula and La Cenerentola. Recordings of all of these, except Dr Atomic, are available at the library if you want to familiarise yourself with the music before the screenings.

If you are willing to venture a bit further afield, New Zealand Opera will be performing The Italian Girl in Algiers and Tchaikovsky’s Eugene Onegin during the year, in both Wellington and Auckland. Recordings and DVDs of both are available in our collection.

If you’re not fast enough to get our CDs and DVDs, or if you just don’t want to make the trip, try the recordings available on our NAXOS database, which you can listen to FREE on your home computer . You will need broadband and a PIN for your library card (for help ring 941 7923, or email