Juha Uusitalo and Karita Mattila performing Salome at Metropolitan Opera
Esa-Pekka Salonen opens London Philharmonia season at Royal Festival Hall
Finnish bass-baritone Juha Uusitalo will today make his début at the Metropolitan Opera in New York. He will perform in the role of John the Baptist in Richard Strauss’s Salome, which is based on Oscar Wilde’s play of the same name.
Actually, Uusitalo seems to have made his breakthrough at the Met even before the curtain has gone up.
"In upcoming seasons
I will perform in Richard Wagner’s The Flying Dutchman and in Giacomo Puccini’s The Girl of the Golden West. Moreover, now I have been asked to take the role of Scarpia in next autumn’s première of Tosca!” Uusitalo reported on Monday.
The only problem appears to be Uusitalo’s schedule.
As he also has a contract with the Finnish National Opera, he should be singing the role of Falstaff in Giuseppe Verdi’s opera of the same name at the Opera House in Helsinki next autumn as well.
The role of Salome will be sung by the celebrated Finnish soprano Karita Mattila, who caused a sensation when she took on Salome at the Met for the first time in 2004.
She will reprise her stunning interpretation of the part, including her unforgettable Dance of the Seven Veils.
Interestingly, Mattila has also been invited to sing the lead in the Tosca production opposite Uusitalo next autumn, so if that materialises we shall once again be seeing a Finnish double-header at the Met twelve months hence.
Today is a veritable super-Tuesday for Finnish classical music, as yet another musical event will take place in London today: Finnish conductor and composer Esa-Pekka Salonen is to mark his arrival as the London Philharmonia’s new Principal Conductor and Artistic Advisor with a gala season opening at Royal Festival Hall, conducting Igor Stravinsky's opera-oratorio Oedipus Rex.
Previously in HS International Edition:
Mikko Franck´s Metropolitan debut on hold through illness (17.9.2008)
Karita Mattila on Ondine Records
Juha Uusitalo website
Esa-Pekka Salonen (Wikipedia)
London Philharmonia Orchestra