Cavalleria Rusticana by Mascagni (24 June-27 Aug 2006), Pagliacci by Leoncavallo (24 June-17 Aug 2006), Aida by Verdi (25 June-27 Aug 2006) and Carmen by Bizet (30 June-22 Aug 2006 begin the 84th edition of the Festival Lirico.
Tradition returns with the opening of the 84th edition of the Festival Lirico at the Arena in Verona (24 June-27 Aug). The inauguration is dedicated to the classic couple of Cavalleria Rusticana by Mascagni and Pagliacci by Leoncavallo (24 June-17 Aug) with a cast of strong singers: Giovanna Casolla, Vincenzo La Scola, Svetla Vassileva and Jos Cura. Vjekoslav Sutej will conduct and Gilbert Deflo will direct. Other titles on the programme are also in a more reassuringly traditional vein: Aida by Verdi (25 June-27 Aug) and Carmen by Bizet (30 June-22 Aug) are entrusted to Franco Zeffirelli, a director who presents sumptuous but always classic productions conceived specifically for a public that prefers not to be thrown by too many innovative ideas. In a relaxed festival like this, there are nevertheless events that will pique the curiosity and excite the fans. For example, the opera divas Daniela Dess and Fiorenza Cedolins will perform Puccini. Dess will sing Madama Butterfly (5 August-26 Aug) in another production by Zefferelli with beautiful scenery and glittering costumes, while Cedolins will interpret Tosca (15 July-25 Aug), directed by Hugo de Ana, who returns to the Arena after many years and who, like Zeffirelli, incites enthusiasm with his luxurious and majestic productions. Paolo Di Nicola