Be the First to Know Lyric Opera of Chicago’s 2017-18 Line-Up of Operas, Concerts, and More

By Andi Lamoreaux and Stephen Raskauskas |

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A new production of Gluck’s Orphée et Eurydice, in partnership with the Joffrey Ballet, and the second installment of Wagner’s Ring, will highlight the 2017-2018 season at Lyric Opera of Chicago. Lyric general director Anthony Freud and music director Sir Andrew Davis announced the new season today at the Civic Opera House.

Orphée will be presented in French beginning September 23. Harry Bicket conducts Dmitry Korchak and Andriana Chuchman in the title roles. John Neumeier, director and chief choreographer of Hamburg Ballet, directs and choreographs the production.

In October Lyric unveils a new-to-Chicago production of Verdi’s Rigoletto starring Quinn Kelsey in the title role, Rosa Feola as Gilda, and Matthew Polenzani as the Duke. Alexander Tsymbalyuk sings Sparafucile. In November, David Pountney’s new production of Die Walküre stars Christine Goerke as Brunnhilde and Eric Owens as Wotan.

In late November, December, and January, the operas are new-to-Chicago productions of Bizet’s The Pearl Fishers, starring Polenzani as Zurga, Mariusz Kwiecien as Nadir, and soprano Marina Rebeka as Leïla, and Puccini’s Turandot, with Amber Wagner in the title role. Stefano La Colla sings the role of Calaf, and Andrea Silvestrelli sings Timur. The role of Liù is shared by Maria Agresta and Janai Brugger in the December and January productions respectively.

In February 2018 Lyric will present Bellini’s I Puritani starring Albina Shagimuratova and Lawrence Brownlee, followed by Mozart’s Così fan tutte starring Ana María Martínez and Alessandro Corbelli.

The mainstage season will close in March 2018 with a new production of Gounod’s Faust, with tenor Benjamin Bernheim making his Lyric debut in the title role. The role of Marguerite is shared by Erin Wall and Ana María Martínez. Christian Van Horn sings Méphistophélès. Jill Grove sings Marthe.

Next season’s musical-theater presentation will be Andrew Lloyd Webber’s rock opera Jesus Christ Superstar, with twenty-six performances in April and May 2018 and casting to be announced at a later date. Timothy Sheader directs the production, which features choreography by Drew McOnie, set and costume designs by Tom Scutt, and lighting by Lee Curran.

In 2018, Lyric is also presenting a solo recital featuring tenor Piotr Beczała, a special concert in honor of Leonard Bernstein, whose centenary will be celebrated that year, and a premiere production of Fellow Travelers by Gregory Spears and Greg Pierce, a chamber opera based on the novel of the same name by Thomas Mallon.

The annual Stars of Lyric Opera at Millennium Park will take place on September 8.

WFMT broadcasts opening night performances of Lyric opera productions live from the Civic Opera House, as well as the Stars of Lyric Opera concert.

For more details about the upcoming opera season, visit Lyric’s website.