The Cleveland Orchestra's Cunning Little Vixen. Photo: Roger Mastroianni (detail) View full image

Maestro Arts to represent The Cleveland Orchestra Opera Productions

Maestro Arts joins The Cleveland Orchestra in new partnership representing the orchestra’s recent, original opera productions

Maestro Arts is to collaborate with The Cleveland Orchestra to represent its ground-breaking, original opera productions around the world. These include Janáček’s The Cunning Little Vixen and Debussy’s Pelléas et Mélisande, both directed by Yuval Sharon; Bartók’s The Miraculous Mandarin and Bluebeard’s Castle, directed and choreographed by Yuri Possokhov in co-production with Chicago’s Joffrey Ballet; and Frederic Wake-Walker’s production of Strauss’s Ariadne auf Naxos.

Beginning in 2009, under the leadership of Music Director Franz Welser-Möst The Cleveland Orchestra brought back staged operas to its Severance Hall home, bringing together outstanding creative teams who transformed classic operas into compelling modern productions, often through the use of innovative technology, video projection and lighting design.

Director Yuval Sharon described the collaboration on Pelléas et Mélisande in 2017: ‘[It] wouldn’t happen without Franz Welser-Möst’s incredible appetite for new ways of presenting opera. He’s focused on unlocking each piece for the individual listener and creating something meaningful that can be shared with an audience, with the community. I deeply connect with Franz’s wish to take an opera, no matter when it was written, and make it feel alive today and foresee how relevant and vital it can be for centuries to come.’

Sharon is at the forefront of developments in using technology to present opera. The New York Times wrote of his production of The Cunning Little Vixen: ‘The animations were consistently responsive to the warmly propulsive music… They provide a consistently apt visual complement to a musical performance of impeccable quality and wide textural range, from the rustle of strings tapped with the wood of bows at the beginning to the horn fanfares that open the final scene with unassuming flawlessness.’

Jordi Martín Mont, Managing Director of Maestro Arts, said of the new partnership: ‘We are delighted to be working with The Cleveland Orchestra. These productions share a visionary creative spirit that draws from different artistic worlds, while also carrying forward the orchestra’s great tradition of musical excellence, so they fit perfectly within the Maestro Arts family. We look forward to taking them to wider audiences around the world and helping to find new audiences for opera.’

Mark Williams, Chief Artistic Officer of The Cleveland Orchestra, said: ‘This new partnership with Maestro Arts is an important extension of The Cleveland Orchestra’s mission to reach as many people as possible with the work we create. Opera is an important part of our artistic identity and our founders understood that an orchestra should be performing this kind of repertoire which is outside of standard symphonic canon. Our opera productions deepen the experience of both the Orchestra and audiences and illuminate the great creative possibilities of Severance Hall.’

The productions join Maestro Arts’ extensive list of multi-arts projects, including L’enfant et les sortilèges and L’heure espagnole by Grégoire Pont and James Bonas, Paper Music by William Kentridge, Love in Fragments and The Art of Being Human from Sommer Ulrickson and Alexander Polzin.

To find out more about any of these projects, please contact Eric Denut.