Chicago Symphony Orchestra presents ‘Aida’

August 22, 2020, 12:00 pm

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Riccardo Muti conducts the Chicago Symphony Orchestra (Photo: Todd Rosenberg)

Maestro Riccardo Muti, widely considered to be today’s preeminent interpreter of Verdi’s music, leads this performance of Aida.

Celebrated soprano Krassimira Stoyanova, who has previously performed with Muti and the CSO in Verdi’s Requiem and Otello, brings her exceptional artistry to the role of Aida. Stoyanova leads the cast, which features mezzo-soprano Anita Rachvelishvili in her CSO debut as Amneris, and tenor Francesco Meli as Radamès. Both leading Verdi interpreters, Rachvelishvili triumphed as Azucena in the Met’s 2018 production of Il trovatore and Meli garnered praise as the Duke of Mantua in the Royal Opera’s production of Rigoletto in London. Renowned Bulgarian baritone Kiril Manolov makes his CSO debut as Amonasro, having performed the title role of Falstaff with Muti at the Ravenna Festival and also in a critically hailed production of Verdi’s Falstaff at Deutsche Oper Berlin. Bass Ildar Abdrazakov makes a return appearance with the CSO and Muti in the role of Ramfis following previous appearances with Muti for Shostakovich’s Suite on Verses of Michelangelo Buonarroti—also released on a 2016 CSO Resound recording—and in performances of Verdi’s Requiem. Bass-baritone Eric Owens, who has performed with Muti and the CSO on multiple occasions including the 2011 performances of Verdi’s Otello, returns in the role of the King. American tenor Issachah Savage makes his CSO debut in the role of the Messenger. Chicago Symphony Chorus sopranos Kimberly Gunderson and Tasha Koontz alternate in the role of the Priestess in these performances, which also feature the Chicago Symphony Chorus, under the direction of Duain Wolfe.

READ MORE: Finding the Details in Grand Opera — Muti, CSO, and CSO Chorus Present Verdi’s Aida