MALCOLM MILLER in conversation with
Hanna Munitz, General Director of New Israeli Opera
<< Continued from last week
MM -- The recent co-production with Italy and Salzburg for Norma
was very imaginative: do you make it a rule to invite producers from outside,
or rather encourage Israeli producers?
HM -- We have had some wonderful producers working here, such as Pountney,
Zefirelli, Gotz Friedrich, Robert Carsen, Jonathan Miller... (the list goes
on). They were all very eager to come and work here, and I feel it is because
they recognise that we devote all our energy to the productions and are
serious about doing the best we can. This makes it worthwhile and enjoyable.
And with the quality of the sets and costumes, many of our productions are
hired out to other opera companies, especially in America. But we also have
some of the best Israeli producers -- I have invited some of our best theatre
directors such as Omri Nitzan from the Cameri Theatre, and of course Rina
MM -- Rina Yerushamli directed that amazing Biblical adaptation Vayomer
Vayechi, which was produced to international acclaim, in New York and
London. She produced last year's Elektra; how was Richard Strauss
received in Israel?
HM -- Well it was a great success. We were lucky that in 1997 the Kirov
Opera came to Israel to perform Salome conducted by Valery Gergiev.
They had come the previous year with Khovanschina. Everyone was so
enthralled by Gergiev, so they did not pay too much attention to the repertoire:
Salome was just accepted; and so when it came to our Elektra,
audiences were ready for Strauss. It was very warmly received, also at the
Savonllinen Festival. We also have a Rosenkavalier scheduled for
two years' time, in a new production by Harry Kupfer.
Copyright © 12 April 2001
Malcolm Miller, London, UK
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