Pietro Mascagni authored the 1905 opera that appears in this 2007 production by the Festival of the Valle d'Itria--the composer's only work with a French libretto. A dramatic poem in two acts, it tells of two brothers whose rivalrous love for the same woman leads to tragedy. This particular production stars Anna Malavasi as Amica, David Sotgiu as Giorgio, and Pierluigi Dilengite as Rinaldo. The Orchestra Internazionale d'Italia and The Slovak Chamber Choir, under the baton of Manlio Benzi, provide musical accompaniment.
Pietro Mascagni explored many different musical styles, from the verismo of his ever-popular Cavalleria rusticana to the sentimental lyricism of Lodoletta. Amica was composed at breakneck speed, reaching completion only a month before its Monte Carlo première in 1905 conducted by the composer, and combined a return to ‘realism' with a more sophisticated style of writing. Its extravagant scenic and vocal demands contributed to the opera's neglect until recent times. Set in the Savoy mountains around 1900, Amica is a ‘dramatic poem in two acts' involving two brothers, Giorgio and Rinaldo, whose love for the same woman, Amica, culminates in tragedy. While today numbering among his least performed works, Amica was initially a triumph, praised for its ‘passionate accent' and ‘impulsive sincerity' by a contemporary critic, and deemed ‘most worthy of re-evaluation' according to the composer's biographer Roger Flury.
Amica – Anna Malavasi
Giorgio – David Sotgiu
Rinaldo – Pierluigi Dilengite
Maître Camoine – Marcello Rosiello
Magdelone – Francesca De Giorgi
Slovak Chamber Choir
Orchestra Internazionale d'Italia
Manlio Benzi, conductor
Alessio Pizzech, stage director
Michele Ricciarini, set design
Sandra von Trauttmansdorff, costumes
Giuseppe Ruggiero, light design
Filmed at the Palazzo Ducale, Martina Franca, Italy, 4-6 August 2007