Tosca – The Highlights

An evening of romance, passion and tragedy set under the stars
Giacomo Puccini’s popular opera Tosca comes to Skycity’s Mindil Beach (Darwin) for one night of romance, passion and tragedy. Set under the stars, highlights from this timeless classic will have audiences spellbound from the very first note.

Set in 1800 Rome, Tosca tells the story of one woman’s willingness to do what it takes to save the love of her life, Mario, from the plans set before him by the deceitful Chief of Police, Scarpia. A political rebel, Mario, is caught and tortured by the corrupt Chief for having helped one of his fellow partisans escape from jail. To add to the political vendetta against Mario, Scarpia uses his power to force his affections on Mario’s love, Tosca. Tosca eventually agrees to give in to Scarpia to help Mario, but a double-cross and two murders wreak havoc. Tosca brings audiences on a passionate and heart-wrenching journey through Puccini's grand opera tragedy, leading to one of opera's most stunning conclusions.

Tosca was first performed at Rome’s Teatro Costanzi on 14 January, 1900 and is based on the French play La Tosca by Victorien Sardou. The play by Sardou had been written for the great Sarah Bernhardt who played the part of Tosca in the premiere in Paris in November 1887.

Experienced director, Hugh Halliday, brings this production to life playing the composer himself, Giacomo Puccini. Halliday works seamlessly with his ‘characters’ to have aria highlights come to life on stage. Arias include: Vissi d’Arte, E lucevan le stele, Qual' occhio al mondo, Non la sospiri la nostra casetta?, Qual' occhio al mondo, Va, Tosca!, O dolci mani and Ha più forte sapore.

Halliday’s career has spanned nearly five decades and has included opera, music theatre, cabaret, special events and gala spectaculars. He has been the associate director for the arena production of Carmen in Zurich, Berlin and Munich, the gigantic stadium production of Aida for Michael Edgley International in Singapore, Perth, Auckland and Brisbane and directed Dame Kiri Te Kanawa in La Boheme for Auckland Opera, IMG and the Victoria State Opera. He has directed for Melbourne Opera Company, the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra, English National Opera, Stonnington Opera in the Park and the Melbourne Comedy Festival.

Dramatic soprano, Merav Barnea plays Tosca. Barnea was born in Israel and started her training at the Israel Rubin Academy of Music in Tel Aviv. After graduating she moved to Berlin where she received her Master's degree in music. Most recently she has been engaged as the leading young dramatic soprano for the Theatre Ulm (Germany) in which she has performed leading roles including Lady Macbeth (Macbeth), Elisabeth (Tannhauser), Marie (Wozzeck) and Tatyana (Eugene Onegin). In 2008 Barnea won, for the third time, the Richard Wagner Society Award.

Baritone, Lucas de Jong, plays Scarpia – Chief of Police. De Jong is a graduate of the Melba Memorial Conservatorium of Music. He has performed with the Victoria State Opera, the Glyndebourne Festival Opera, the Royal Opera House – Covent Garden, Opera Australia, the West Australian Opera and Melbourne Opera. De Jong teaches classical voice at Monash University (Melbourne) and has conducted performances of The Magic Flute and Orpheus in the Underworld for the Monash Opera Ensemble. He is the Musical Director of the Melbourne Welsh Male Choir.

‘Audiences will experience the full gamut of emotion in this night of opera. They will be captivated by the love between Tosca and Mario, incensed by the antics of Scarpia and struck by Tosca’s decision. This evening, set under the stars, is an opportunity to be reunited with Puccini’s Tosca, an opera full of passion, turmoil and emotion,’ says Hao Zhou, Producer (3CT).

Date:Sunday 6 June at 6.30pm (gates open at 4.30pm)
Venue:Skycity – Mindil Beach, Darwin
Email: info@3ctpresents.com