RFO with Karina Canellakis - Photo: Eduardus Lee

Franco Fagioli and Max Emanuel Cencic in Porpora opera


  • Nicola Antonio Porpora Carlo il Calvo

Franco Fagioli and Max Emanuel Cencic - with star singers of today, George Petrou revives Nicola Porpora's opera Carlo il Calvo (Charles the Bald).

Baroque opera for star singers

Carlo il Calvo is a dramma per musica by the Naples-based composer Nicola Porpora. The work, written on an original libretto by Francesco Silvano, was first performed in Rome in 1738.
There, Porpora celebrated triumphs with his many star singers.

Time for a rediscovery

Charles the Bald, or Charles II, was the grandson of Charlemagne and the son of Louis the Pious and Judith of Bavaria. As a young man, he was not called this because of his hairstyle, but because he was 'without possession', that is, without owning any part of the Carolingian Empire.
The fact that he finally became ruler of the western part, West Francia, after the division of the empire, had cost him a lot of battles with brothers and half-brothers, including his half-brother Lothair.
This is the story told in the opera. Recently, a number of Porpora's arias have been recorded, including the beautifully elegiac 'Quando s'oscuro il cielo' (When the sky turns dark) from Carlo il Calvo, and these arias are more than enough reason to perform his operas in full again.

Saturday 17 October 2020
13:00 hours
The Royal Concertgebouw

Large Hall


Armonia Atenea
George Petrou
Franco Fagioli
Countertenor, Adalgiso
Max Emanuel Cencic
Countertenor, Lottario
Hasnaa Bennani
Soprano, Gildippe
Suzanne Jerosme
Soprano, Giuditta
Nian Wang
Mezzo-Soprano, Eudige
Bruno de Sá
Countertenor, Berardo
Petr Nekoranec
Tenor, Asprando

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