Zurich Opera House tickets 24 May 2025 - Don Pasquale | GoComGo.com

Don Pasquale

Zurich Opera House, Zurich, Switzerland
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Important Info
Type: Opera
City: Zurich, Switzerland
Starts at: 20:00
Acts: 3
Intervals: 1
Duration: 2h 25min
Sung in: Italian
Titles in: English,German
Soprano: Olga Peretyatko (Norina)
Tenor: Andrew Owens (Ernesto)
Baritone: Florian Sempey (Dr Malatesta)
Conductor: Iván López-Reynoso
Orchestra: Philharmonia Zürich
Baritone: Pietro Spagnoli (Don Pasquale)
Choir: Zürich Opera Chorus
Composer: Gaetano Donizetti
Director: Christof Loy
Librettist: Gaetano Donizetti
Librettist: Giovanni Ruffini

Zurich Opera House's presenting Donizetti’s Don Pasquale – in Christof Loy’s successful production – with a new cast: Bowing in the title role is the accomplished Italian baritone Pietro Spagnoli. The much-sought-after soprano Olga Peretyatko is Norina, and French baritone Florian Sempey appears in Zurich as Malatesta. Ensemble member Andrew Owens lends his lilting tenor to Ernesto. Mexican director Iván López Reynoso leads them all through Donizetti’s multifaceted score.

Don Pasquale is one of Gaetano Donizetti’s final operas. Shortly before his full-blown syphilis outbreak, the composer wrote his dramma buffo about an elderly gentleman seeking happiness and hoping to marry a young woman. The illness left Donizetti – surrounded by interlopers hoping to get their hands on his estate – to die tragically in an insane asylum.

In the opera, Don Pasquale is the victim of a mean joke: the beautiful young Norina pretends to be an innocent young thing, but after her wedding to Don Pasquale she turns into a downright shrew who makes life hell for her unsuspecting groom. Pasquale wants nothing more than to be rid of his young bride. "Anyone who marries at an old age is pretty naive", Norina concludes laconically, now that she can finally marry Ernesto, Pasquale’s nephew. Pasquale had originally forbidden the union, and jealously threw Ernesto out of the house.

In spite of the audience’s delight in the lesson taught to Pasquale, Donizetti also manages to generate sympathy for the title character. Norina and her ally Dottore Malatesta, Pasquale’s supposed advisor, cut dubious figures in this opera.

Premiere of this production: 03 January 1843, Théâtre-Italien, Paris

Don Pasquale is an opera buffa, or comic opera, in three acts by Gaetano Donizetti with an Italian libretto completed largely by Giovanni Ruffini as well as the composer. It was based on a libretto by Angelo Anelli for Stefano Pavesi's opera Ser Marcantonio written in 1810 but, on the published libretto, the author appears as "M.A.". The opera was first performed on 3 January 1843 by the Théâtre-Italien at the Salle Ventadour in Paris with great success and it is generally regarded as being the high point of the 19th century opera buffa tradition and, in fact, marking its ending.

Venue Info

Zurich Opera House - Zurich
Location   Sechseläutenplatz 1

Zürich Opera House is a main opera house in Zürich and Switzerland. Located at the Sechseläutenplatz, it has been the home of the Zürich Opera since 1891, and also houses the Bernhard-Theater Zürich. It is also home to the Zürich Ballet. The Opera House also holds concerts by its Philharmonia orchestra, matinees, Lieder evenings and events for children. The Zürich Opera Ball is organised every year in March, and is usually attended by prominent names.

The first permanent theatre, the Aktientheater, was built in 1834 and it became the focus of Richard Wagner’s activities during his period of exile from Germany.

The Aktientheater burnt down in 1890. The new Stadttheater Zürich (municipal theatre) was built by the Viennese architects Fellner & Helmer, who changed their previous design for the theatre in Wiesbaden only slightly. It was opened in 1891. It was the city's main performance space for drama, opera, and musical events until 1925, when it was renamed Opernhaus Zürich and a separate theatre for plays was built: The Bernhard Theater opened in 1941, in May 1981 the Esplanada building was demolished, and the present adjoint building opened on 27/28 December 1984 after three years of transition in the Kaufhaus building nearby Schanzengraben.

By the 1970s, the opera house was badly in need of major renovations; when some considered it not worth restoring, a new theatre was proposed for the site. However, between 1982 and 1984, rebuilding took place but not without huge local opposition which was expressed in street riots. The rebuilt theatre was inaugurated with Wagner’s Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg and the world première of Rudolf Kelterborn’s Chekhov opera Der Kirschgarten.

As restored, the theatre is an ornate building with a neo-classical façade of white and grey stone adorned with busts of Weber, Wagner, and Mozart. Additionally, busts of Schiller, Shakespeare, and Goethe are to be found. The auditorium is built in the neo-rococo style and seats approximately 1200 people. During the refurbishment, the issue of sightlines was not adequately addressed. As a result, the theatre has a high number of seats with a limited view, or no view, of the stage. This is unusual in international comparison, where sightlines in historic opera houses have been typically enhanced over time.

Corporate archives and historical library collections are held at the music department of the Predigerkirche Zürich.

The Zürich Opera House is also home of the International Opera Studio (in German: Internationales Opernstudio IOS) which is a educational program for young singers and pianists. The studio was created in 1961 and has renowned artists currently teaching such as Brigitte Fassbaender, Hedwig Fassbender, Andreas Homocki, Rosemary Joshua, Adrian Kelly, Fabio Luisi, Jetske Mijnssen, Ann Murray, Eytan Pessen or Edith Wiens.

Important Info
Type: Opera
City: Zurich, Switzerland
Starts at: 20:00
Acts: 3
Intervals: 1
Duration: 2h 25min
Sung in: Italian
Titles in: English,German
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