Celebrated actor Miranda Richardson is set to play the Duchesse de Crakentorp in Laurent Pelly’s Royal Opera production of Donizetti’s spirited, farcical opéra comique La Fille du régiment. The production returns to the Royal Opera House this July for its fourth revival. Laurent Pelly’s production received its premiere in 2007, and was last seen on the Covent Garden stage in the 2013/14 Season. The Duchesse de Crakentorp is a non-singing comic role, which has previously been played by actor Dawn French, and, most recently, New Zealand soprano Kiri Te Kanawa (who also sang an interpolated aria from Puccini’s Edgar). Miranda Richardson is an accomplished stage, film and television actress whose performances have been widely met with critical acclaim and award nominations. She made her first impression on film audiences in Mike Newell’s Dance With A Stranger in 1985. Other film credits include The Crying Game, Tom and Viv and David Cronenberg’s 2002 film Spider. She is also well known for her role as Queen Elizabeth I, aka Queenie, in the British television comedy, Blackadder. Additional high-profile roles include; Lady Mary Van Tassel in Sleepy Hollow, the voice of Mrs Tweedy in the Aardman animation Chicken Run, Vanessa Bell in The Hours and Rita Skeeter, the toxic Daily Prophet journalist in the Harry Potter franchise. Last year, Miranda starred in ITV’s six-part drama Girlfriends, written by BAFTA-winning screenwriter Kay Mellor. She was most recently seen in Sky’s high-octane futuristic drama, Curfew. She can currently be seen in Neil Gaiman's TV adaptation of Good Omens, based on the beloved cult novel he wrote with Terry Pratchett. Most recently, Miranda joined the ensemble cast of HBO’s Game Of Thrones prequel pilot, from writer Jane Goldman and author/GOT co-executive producer George R.R. Martin. Making her debut with The Royal Opera, Miranda Richardson joins a cast of some of opera’s brightest stars, including French soprano Sabine Devieilhe as Marie, alongside Mexican tenor and bel canto expert Javier Camarena and South Korean tenor and Jette Parker Young Artist Konu Kim, who share the role of Tonio. They are joined by Italian baritone Pietro Spagnoli as Sulpice Pingot (a role he previously sang for the Company in 2014), Albanian mezzo-soprano Enkelejda Shkoza as the Marquise de Berkenfield and Scottish baritone Donald Maxwell as her steward Hortensius (a role he created in this production in 2007 and has reprised in each revival since). Italian conductor and Royal Opera regular Evelino Pidò conducts this exciting cast, the Orchestra of the Royal Opera House and the Royal Opera Chorus. Abandoned on a battlefield as a baby, Marie grows up as the adopted daughter and mascot of the French regiment who found her. When she falls love in with Tonio, a young Tyrolean who once saved her life, Marie is torn between her sense of loyalty to her regiment and her desire to follow her heart. The situation becomes more complicated when the haughty Marquise de Berkenfield arrives on the scene, claims Marie as her long-lost niece, and takes her to her castle in order to make her into a lady. Tonio, who has joined the Regiment in order to marry Marie, is in despair and is determined to get his beloved back and to give her the happiness she deserves. French director and costume designer Laurent Pelly made his Royal Opera debut in 2007 with La Fille du régiment and has since returned to direct L’elisir d’amore, Manon, Cendrillon and Robert le diable. In addition, he designed and co-designed costumes for these productions. His many awards include the 2016 International Opera Award for Best Director. La Fille du régiment opens at the Royal Opera House on 8 July 2019, with subsequent performances on 11, 13, 15, 18 and 20 (matinee) July 2019. Sung in French with English surtitles Tickets available from the Royal Opera House website and box office (+44 (0)20 7304 4000)
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