|All is set for La Traviata|
Final preparations are currently being done on and off the Astra Theatre stage as the opening night of La Traviata, considered a favourite by many locals from Giuseppe Verdi’s magnificent compositions, is now just hours away.
The Gozo production, tomorrow and on Saturday, is only the second such production to be staged worldwide. It is a creation of Italian director Marco Gandini whose experience ranges from working in all major Italian opera houses as well as at the Metropolitan in New York, the Royal Opera House in Covent Garden, London and the New National Theatre in Tokyo. Mr Gandini is also Franco Zeffirelli’s associate director since 1992.
La Traviata at the Astra sees Gozitan soprano Miriam Cauchi in the leading role of Violetta, Italian tenor Alessandro Liberatore as Alfredo and Italian baritone Marco Chingari as Germont. Other members of the cast include Georgina Gauci as Flora, Dorienne Portelli as Annina, Frans Mangion as Gaston, Joseph Lia as Barone Douphol, Giampiero Cicino as Marchese d’Obigny, Kenneth Scicluna as Dottore Grenvil, Mario Portelli as Giuseppe, Violetta’s servant while Armando Tomasello sings the part of the Commissionaire. The Malta Philharmonic Orchestra will again be directed by Joseph Vella. The Teatru Astra Opera Chorus, trained by Maria Frendo, is another staple ingredient. Choreography, prepared by Felix Busuttil, involves the participation of male members of the YADA Dance Company.
Final touches are currently also being done to the stage, designed by scenographer Mauro Tinti, built by volunteers Carmel Zammit and Emanuel J. Farrugia and their teams, and decorated by scenic artist Joseph Cauchi and his aides. The costumes have been designed by Luca Canfora and are currently being finished by Manuel Grima and George Farrugia, Astra Theatre’s wardrobe masters. Stage light setting is also currently being done by volunteer George Zammit.