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Norma | Vincenzo Bellini

Updated: Dec 1, 2023

The great international production, dedicated to the 100th anniversary of the birth of Maria Callas, begins its European tour with a premiere in Athens on August 28 and 30, with 110 performers and artists live on the stage of Herodion.

The cultural organization "Lykofos" honoring the 100th anniversary of the birth of Maria Callas presents the historical opera "Norma" by Vincenzo Bellini -the great Greek soprano’s favorite composer- on August 28 and 30 at the Herodion, directed by Tom Wolff and conducted by Eugene Kohn.

An international production with an all-star team of performers and contributors from around the world, which will travel to European capitals as part of the international celebrations for the 100 years since the birth of the leading treble, holding a world premiere in Athens, with

the live collaboration of the National Symphony Orchestra and the Mixed Choir "Fons Musicalis" under the direction of Kostis Konstandaras.

The famous French director Tom Volf, who has become the most important collector and expert of Maria Callas’ work, with the multi- award winning documentary "Maria by Callas", after the sold out performances of Monica Bellucci who captivated the Athens audience with the reading of letters of Maria Callas at Herodion in 2021 under his directorial instructions, collaborates again with the cultural organization "Lykofos" of Giorgos Lykiardopoulos and returns to Greece, this time with a brand new production dedicated to the great celebration.

Norma, Callas' favorite role, which she sang a total of 92 times on stage - more than any other opera - returns to the Herodion, where Callas herself sang in 1944 and 1957, and in Greece, the country where she gave one of Norma's most legendary performances in 1960 in Epidaurus.

Watch here: "Casta Diva", one of the most famous excerpts from Maria Callas' unique interpretation of Bellini's "Norma", on December 19, 1958 at Palais Garnier, a performance that marked her debut at the Paris Opera.

For this great undertaking, Tom Volf assembled an excellent international cast. The famous Lebanese-Canadian soprano Joyce El-Khoury in the title role, who in 2022 was named by the Dallas Opera "Maria Callas Debut Artist of the Year" and with appearances at the operas of Chicago, Dallas, Tokyo and Montreal, while in the role of Pollione is the internationally renowned Greek tenor Marios Fragoulis, holder of the "Maria Callas" scholarship and with appearances in the most important theaters of the world (La Scala in Milan, Carnegie Hall in New York, Novaya Opera in Moscow and Royal Albert Hall in London). He collaborated with Montserrat Caballé, Maria Guleghina and Angela Gheorgiu.

In the role of Adalgisa is the American soprano Theresa Carlomagno, while Oroveso, Norma's father, is performed by the acclaimed young bass Sava Vemić.

Conducted by the American conductor Eugene Kohn, who accompanied Maria Callas on the piano during her Masterclass at the Juilliard School of New York in 1971 and was a student of the legendary conductor Fausto Cleva. In his unique career he has conducted some of the most historic opera stars such as Renata Tebaldi, Luciano Pavarotti and Placido Domingo.

The artistic team is completed by the great choreographer Ersi Pitta, the leading Greek set and costume designer Yiannis Metzikof and set designer David Negrin.

The Mixed Choir "Fons Musicalis" under the direction of Kostis Konstandaras participates in this international production.

The production is under the auspices of the Paris-based "Maria Callas Foundation", which was co-founded in 2017 by close friends and collaborators of La Divina and Tom Volf and is today the largest international organization aiming to defend and promote the life of the

great soprano.




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