Canadian Opera Company 2011/2012 season features flashy new shows, logo
The Canadian Opera Company announced its 2011–2012 season yesterday with an exciting and surprisingly contemporary program. Notably, the season features two Canadian premieres: the 20th-century opera A Florentine Tragedy by Alexander Zemlinsky (based on the Oscar Wilde play) and the first 21st-century opera to hit the mainstage, Love From Afar by Finnish composer Kaija Saariaho. The COC’s general director, Alexander Neef, has a special relationship with Love from Afar, having worked on its world premiere at Salzburg in 2000. We’re hoping this season is a sign of new direction under musical director Johannes Debus and Neef.
Other highlights: making its COC premiere is Semele, the first Handel opera to be performed at the Four Seasons Centre. It will feature an actual Ming Dynasty ancestral temple as part of its set. The COC’s new season also brings back Puccini’s Tosca, a perennial favourite, which was last seen at the Four Seasons in 2008. This time around, it will feature the star Canadian soprano Adrianne Pieczonka in the title role.
Oh, and the COC also got a new logo, which the Globe’s Robert Everett-Green, hilariously, likens to “the Chanel logo undergoing cell division.”