O patria mia! A complete concert version of Verdi’s Aida, with Riccardo Muti leading the Chicago Symphony Orchestra and Chorus, recorded live at Symphony Center, will be broadcast Saturday, Aug. 22, beginning at noon (Central), on WFMT-FM (98.7) as part of the nationally syndicated WFMT Radio Network Opera Series.
The performance, which features an internationally acclaimed cast of vocal soloists, marks the radio premiere of this production, recorded in June 2019 with Bulgarian soprano Krassimira Stoyanova as Aida, Georgian mezzo-soprano Anita Rachvelishvili as Amneris, Italian tenor Francesco Meli as Radamès, Russian bass Ildar Abdrazakov as Ramfis, American bass-baritone Eric Owens as the King, Bulgarian baritone Kiril Manolov as Amonasro and American tenor Issachah Savage as the Messenger. Chorus Director Duain Wolfe prepared the chorus.
Along with terrestrial radio, the performance can be heard online at wfmt.com (but will not be available for on-demand streaming afterward).
Aida marks the fourth Verdi opera presented by the CSO and led by Muti, considered to be today’s pre-eminent interpreter of the composer’s works. Of Verdi and Aida, Muti has said, “He speaks about our defects, our love, our jealousy — all the human aspects. I have repeated many times the words spoken by Gabriele d’Annunzio, the great Italian poet, when Verdi died: ‘Diede una voce alle speranze e ai lutti. Pianse ed amò per tutti.’ (“He gave a voice to all our hopes and sorrows. He cried and he loved for all of us.”) This is Verdi.”
TOP: Riccardo Muti motions to Anita Rachvelishvili as Amneris during the CSO’s concert staging of Verdi’s Aida. | Todd Rosenberg Photography 2019