Maestro stays: Covent Garden breathes again

Maestro stays: Covent Garden breathes again


norman lebrecht

April 06, 2016

It has just been announced that Sir Antonio Pappano has renewed his contract until 2020.

That allays fears of instability triggered by the resignation of Royal Opera artistic director Kasper Holten.

pappano didonato

There will be seven new productions next season – Norma, Così fan tutte, Shostakovich The Nose, Der Rosenkavalier, Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg, Thomas Ades’s Exterminating Angel, and Verdi’s Otello.

Pappano, in his 15th season, will conduct three new shows and two revivals. Barry Kosky and Jan Philipp Gloger are the two new directors.

Glogger makes his UK debut with Cosi. Kosky is a long-shot candidate to succeed Holten.

Kasper Holten writes:

Have just had my last season press conference, to announce our 2016/17 season, together with Kevin O’Hare, Tony Pappano and Alex Beard. I am so excited about this season, it feels like all the things we want to do are finally unfolding after years of planning and preparation – Tom Ades’ new opera The Exterminating Angel, Norma with Netrebko, Otello with Kaufmann, Rosenkavalier with Fleming, The Nose directed by Barrie Kosky w Metzmacher conducting, me and Tony doing a new Meistersinger with Bryn Terfel, a terrific team for a new Cosi, and so many fabulous singers and conductors in revivals of Written on Skin, Mitridate, Adriana Lecouvreur, Manon Lescaut, Hoffmann, Trovatore, Don Carlo, Turandot, Butterfly, Barbiere, Elisir – and three amazing Violettas in the inevitable Traviatas! It is going to be SO hard to leave this place…




  • DSG says:

    Good news but some confusion there between the Exterminating and Fiery Angels!

  • Elizabeth Owen says:

    Wonderful news — phew!

  • Bill Worley says:

    Surely I can’t be the only person who is disappointed by this news. CG needs new blood. Pappano, in my view, has outstayed his welcome

  • DESR says:

    I think he is good for the House, as long as stays interested and fizzing with energy, but must he keep grabbing the Wagner?

  • DESR says:

    Some more comments on the season – nearly all about the conductor roster and repertoire:

    1. Take Pappano out of Meistersinger and he can do swapsies with Bychkov who is down for Cosi. (I would have given him Rosenkavalier as it is an important house work for an MD to do.)
    2. I thought Renee Fleming had already said farewell to the Marschallin??
    3. Why do they keep booking plodders like Bertrand de Billy (and then giving him DON CARLO of all things!!) and Evelino Pido??
    4. Where is Luisotti?
    5. Good that Richard Farnes has got a gig, but Trov?

    But those cavils aside, looks reasonably appealing!

  • DESR says:

    PS Are they going to to the five act Don Carlo in French this time? The casting looks quite French…

  • DESR says:

    Big coup for Tony Pappano to get JK to do his first Otello at the ROH. Proper pulling power: another good reason he’s staying!

    Also: great that Gwyn Hughes Jones has been cast as Walther in Meistersinger: throughly deserved after his performance in the role last year at ENO (in English, obvs).

  • John Groves says:

    Kosky on the long list to replace Tony? I think not – surely he can have far more fun at KOB!