Venus & Adonis / Dido & Aeneas    John Blow & Henry Purcell

Director:Laurence Dale
Costume Designer:Gabriella Ingram
Conductor:Piers Maxim

Venus, Sorceress Kelebogile Boikanyo Besong

Dido Natalia Kawalek-Plewniak

Adonis; Aeneas Edward Grint

Belinda Sophie Junker

Cupid; Spirit, Mercury Jake Arditti

Shepherdess; Handmaid Einat Aronstein

Shepherd; Sailor Jeffrey Francis

1st Witch Aurélie Franck

2nd Witch Danielle Rohr


The Pavillion Ensemble

Company:Innsbruck Festival of Early Music

Press items for this production:

  • Triumph für "Barockoper: Jung" in Innsbruck


    Festival : Triumph for Baroque Opera


    The premiere performance of the operas "Venus and Adonis " and " Dido and Aeneas " at the Innsbruck Festival of Early Music became a triumphal procession, Wednesday, for all involved.

    The visitors responded enthusiastically with long applause.


    The special ingredients for this more than successful artistic dish served to the audience at the premiere, the Austrian Press Agency found (APA ) obvious:

    Firstly, the famous and foremost British composers of the 17th Century John Blow ( "Venus and Adonis " ) and Henry Purcell ( "Dido and Aeneas ").


    Secondly, the convincing casting and choice of the young singers, who were among the winners at the Innsbruck International Singing Competition for Baroque Opera “Pietro Antonio Cesti” 2012.


    And thirdly, the director Laurence Dale himself, who, as an Englishman captured in this tragi-comedy, the quintessence of that particularly British humor that the staging needed.



    Fun ends, in both cases, in tragedy


    Dale sees these two forebears of British operas as satirical and humourous . Unbridled fun along with that archetypal , slightly rude, cheeky English humor and the eternal trials and tribulations of love , which of course ends, in both cases, in tragedy.

    The first piece of the evening, "Venus and Adonis " , ends with Venus and Dido violently mourning the death of Adonis . The second opera , "Dido and Aeneas " concludes with the departure of Aeneas and a devastated Dido, who then sings her own death .



    A full story in one arch.

    "When you see the piece as a frivolous comedy, the emotional charge of the last scene is even more intense ," the director said before the premiere . That's what he succeeded in making happen; as if the storylines between the two pieces merge into one. The Death of Adonis and his resurrection as Aeneas - the rampant tragicomedy rescued , as it were tightly bound over to the next .


    Two hours of music in perfection

    To highlight one of the singers would particularly unfair, even pointless. They all stood out, some even in multiple roles. The comparison on an international level is more than successful. The stage in the ancient courtyard of the Faculty of Theology benefitted from its spartan nature. The lighting and light games created deliberate, perfect dramatic effects. The costumes and masks were in their colorfulness and sometimes shrillness, evocative of a courtly masque of the 17th Century. And the musicians of " The Pavillion ensemble" made ​​for the perfect wave on which the stage actors " then surfed " . Music in its perfection as two hours passed .

    Wiener Zeitung
    15 August 2013
  • Triumph für Barockoper 

    Tirol ORF
    15 August 2013
  • Wenn Göttin Venus Launen zeigt

    Tiroler Tageszeitung
    Ursula Strohal, 16 August 2013
  • "Barockoper jung" begeistert

    Kronen Zeitung
    Franz Gratl, 15 August 2013

Complete Production List:

Agrippina (Internationale Händel-Festspiele Göttingen)   |   Aida (Opera Africa)   |   Ariadne auf Naxos (Opéra Royal de Wallonie)   |   Ariadne auf Naxos (Opéra de Monte-Carlo)   |   Ariadne auf Naxos (Nederlandse Reisopera)   |   Cosi fan Tutte ()   |   Der Zarewitsch (Lehár Festival, Bad Ischl)   |   Die Fledermaus (Den Norske Opera)   |   Don Giovanni (Vlaams Radio Orkest in Amsterdam Concertgebouw)   |   Fidelio (Dorset Opera)   |   Gustave III ou Le Bal masqué (Opéra Théâtre de Metz)   |   I Capuleti e i Montecchi (Opera Africa)   |   Il barbiere di Siviglia (Nationale Reisopera)   |   L'Incontro Improvviso (Haydn Festival Eisenstadt)   |   L'Opera Seria (Nationale Reisopera)   |   La pietra del paragone (Opera Trionfo)   |   La Voix Humaine/ L'Heure Espagnole (Nationale Reisopera)   |   Land des Lächelns (Salzburger Landestheater)   |   Les contes d'Hoffmann (Nationale Reisopera)   |   Les Huguenots (Opéra Théâtre de Metz)   |   Les Malheurs D'Orphée / Dido and Aeneas (Gotham Chamber Opera)   |   Madama Butterfly (Nederlandse Reisopera)   |   Norma (Moldavian National Opera, Chisinau)   |   Opera Extravaganza (Opera Africa)   |   Powder Her Face (Angers Nantes Opéra)   |   The Count of Luxembourg (Lehár Festival, Bad Ischl)   |   Venus & Adonis / Dido & Aeneas (Innsbruck Festival of Early Music)   |   Zar und Zimmermann (Tiroler Landestheater)   |