| The Opera Halle

Serse HWV 40

Opera by G. F. Handel // Musical director: Attilio Cremonesi // Stage director: Louisa Proske // Set design: Jon Bausor // Soloists: Anna Bonitatibus (Serse), Leandro Marziotte (Arsamene), Franziska Krötenheerdt (Romilda), Vanessa Waldhart (Atalanta), Yulia Sokolik (Amastre), Andreas Beinhauer (Elviro), Michael Zehe (Ariodate) // Handel Festival Orchestra Halle // In the original Italian with German supertitles // A Halle Opera production as part of the Handel Festival // Organised by: Bühnen Halle

Following the concert, Anna Bonitatibus will receive the 2023 City of Halle Handel Prize, awarded by the Handel House Foundation. This prize is an honorary award with no monetary value. The laudatory speech will be delivered by Attilio Cremonesi.

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With the aria Ombra mai fù, better known as “Largo”, the opera Serse opens with one of the most beautiful and best-known of Handel’s melodies. This love story about King Xerxes of ancient Persia was first performed in 1738 and can be regarded as one of the best-loved works penned by Handel. A late work by Handel, from 1738, it sparkles with musical ideas and caustic humour. It takes a satirical look at the members of an upper class who, against a glamorous background, act like toddlers in a sandpit. The international star Anna Bonitatibus, who is celebrated on stages worldwide first and foremost for her Baroque repertoire, and who was nominated for Best Female Voice in the 2016 International Opera Awards, will be playing the title role. With Ombra mai fu, the opera’s famous first aria, she will provide a magnificent opening to the 2023 Handel Festival.