When: Mon., Dec. 7, 7:30 p.m., Thu., Dec. 10, 7:30 p.m. and Sat., Dec. 12, 7:30 p.m. 2015
In early 2012 officials at Lyric Opera couldn’t have known that the opera they were commissioning, based on a novel by Ann Patchett, would be so relevant. Bel Canto is the story of a band of terrorists and an international group of hostages that just happens to include a world-renowned soprano. They’re holed up together for months in the vice president’s mansion of a South American country resembling Peru, which is where the real-life events that inspired the book took place in 1996. Patchett has said that the model for her opera-star heroine was Lyric creative consultant Renée Fleming—and in this production, which looks to be perfectly cast all around, she’s played by another real-life diva, Danielle de Niese. Peruvian composer Jimmy Lopez wrote the music—the story calls for at least snippets of some classic opera favorites—while Cuban-American playwright Nilo Cruz penned the libretto. It’ll be sung in eight of the languages spoken by its captives and captors.