Predictions for COC 2019/20

soothsayer_traits_advisingIt’s that time when I go through the ultimately pointless exercise of trying to predict what the COC season for 2019/20 will be.  In some ways it’s an interesting intellectual enterprise not unlike what an Intelligence Officer would do.  What do past patterns reveal?  What can we glean from published sources?  What have prisoners told us?  (No I don’t really interrogate captured opera singers tempting as it might be).

The usual place to start is outstanding COC co-productions.  I’m aware of two at present.  There’s a Verdi La forza del destino out there.  I think it’s the Bieito one cancelled by the Met but I could be wrong about that.  Seems like a high probability bet.  There’s also a Saariaho Only the Sound Remains.  Given the reshuffle/reschedule of La Reine Garçon and The Old Fools this seems like it would make a good fill for the “modern/contemporary” slot.

Another thing to look at is recurring patterns.  La Bohème for example runs every five years with a great deal more predictability than the King streetcar.  The same thing has been true for Madama Butterfly and it’s due this year but I’m going to go out on a limb and say “no”.  In the current climate few operas are as hard to justify and the COC’s tired old production certainly doesn’t cut it.  I suppose one could get someone to do a “feminist Butterfly“.  Katie Mitchell might be interesting.  I think it’s unlikely though… and Turandot hasn’t been done since the new house opened.  That’s my guess anyway.

There’s not been any Czech rep for quite a while.  I’ve heard a few whispers about Rusalka.  Let’s pencil that in.

So we seem to be missing something big and German and something Mozartish.  I’ll hazard a guess that we’ll see B&G skipped this year, assuming the hors saison Parsifal is still a thing.  That would leave room for a Barber of Seville which would serve nicely as the “bums on seats” show and it’s about due.  If there is B&G then Rosenkavalier hasn’t been seen in a while.

So Mozart… arithmetic says Don Giovanni but a revival of the Tcherniakov production would seem unlikely given it’s reception last time (FTR I like it if no-one else did).  It’s too soon too for pretty much anything else except Idomeneo (and please God, not that potato sack production).  A new production of either would not be a huge surprise or there’s the lower cost option of reviving the Carsen Orfeo ed Euridice.  It’s a toss up but I’m going to plump for Idomeneo.

So, La forza del destino, Only the Sound Remains, Rusalka, Turandot, Barber of Seville, Idomeneo.  It’s a plausible season.  But it’s more guesswork than usual and if I’ve got three right I’ll be happy.

16 thoughts on “Predictions for COC 2019/20

  1. My recurring favourite January post on OR is finally here!
    That’s solid. Here’s hoping whatever Puccini we get (Turandot, Fanciulla, Rondine?) that it’s in a new production. Did you actually hear something re the Katie Mitchell thing, or is that your wild guess? Is there’s anybody who should direct Butterfly, it’s her.

      • Did these guys ever do Makropulos? In recent memory? They did have a well-received From the House of the Dead, but i can’t see them rushing to revive that. Also Pelleas may be due for revival/new prod. The forest motifs in the COC season teasers may hint either at that, or (hope not) Britten’s A Midsummer.

        At any rate, they will need two good sellers, I think.

        Also there have been hints of an Aida revival, but I think you’re right, if they want to do the Bieito La Forza at all, it’s about time they did so that Verdi may edge out Aida this time.

      • There was a House of the Dead scheduled in an Alden production two or three years ago. It could switched out for that Barbara Monk-Feldman thing. No Makrupolos in ages though I’m sure I’ve seen a poster for it at the COC offices.

  2. I’d put some money on Turandot. Its one of Goerke’s roles, and I’m sure Neef would like to continue what is now an annual winning formula. She’s in town so perfect timing for the launch. Only the Sound Remains gives COC modernist cred and with only 3 performers and minimalist production a money saver. Not sure how big a seller it will be though.

    Would love to see Bieto Forza – this is the Spanish Civil War production seen at ENO a couple of years ago? They could toss in his Turandot as a package deal! I suspect Bieto’s foregrounding of its cruelty is too over the top for North American opera houses. Still, I’ve always found that opera to be profoundly disturbing. It would be good to get a production that treats it less as orientalist fable and more as a parable for our times.

      • According to a Bieto bio on the Opera de Paris site, the ENO production production will be seen in Toronto in 2020. Of course it also says it will be performed at the Met in 201 and we know how that went. If anyone believes the Met didn’t have to money to stage it, I wonder how COC can afford it.

        So it looks like Turandot, Forza, Rusalka (makes sense esp with Radvanovsky) Only the Sounds Remains? Maybe Dutchman – a pretty hefty season – certainly need something a bit lighter so Barber of Seville would fit the bill.

  3. We have new co-productions from Teatro Real: Turandot (Robert Wilson – who has it listed as Fall 2019) and Idomeneo (Robert Carsen). I know they had been prepping Dutchman props, but not sure if that was for the revival in Dallas. Rusalka fits the fairy tale teaser images, as does Turandot and Only the Sound Remains. Would love to see the Wozzeck as a big B&G piece, and the sets will be in NA by then. I threw a Rossini in there too, went Cenerentola though. See you Monday!

  4. Pingback: COC 19/20 revealed | operaramblings

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