Announcing Cavalli's Giasone

David Hansen is GiasoneThose of a certain age will remember the ABC radio program The Argonauts' Club. It was loosely based on the mythical story of Jason's search for the Golden Fleece. As his parents told it, a young Ken Nielsen wore a hole in the cloth covering the radio loudspeaker, so closely did he listen each afternoon. Little did any of them know that some years down the track, the opera company Ken helped found would be tackling a baroque opera on the same subject…

Francesco Cavalli composed Giasone (‘Jason’ in Italian) a few years after L'Ormindo (which we presented in 2009). First performed in Venice in 1649, Giasone became the most frequently performed opera in the entire 17th century.

These days it is rarely performed. Our production will be the Australian premiere. While we’re confident that it’s not going to spark a revolution and upset the Big Opera applecart by knocking Bohème out of the No.1 spot on the Most-Often- Performed-Opera-in-the-21st-Century charts, we happen to think it’s rather good. And entertaining. And full of the most glorious arias for ‘our’ Jason – David Hansen. Oh, and it’s a little bit naughty…

In our coming newsletters you’ll find out all you could ever want to know about this unfairly neglected opera, as well as Pinchgut's plans for its performance. We’ll also be introducing all our wonderful cast, and give you a chance to meet some of our players as well.

Our dates will conflict with the last cycle of Opera Australia’s production of Wagner's Ring in Melbourne, so if you want to see both Giasone and the Ring, we hope you heeded our advice last year and booked for one of the other two cycles. (So far as we can tell, there are 24 productions of the Ring around the world next year, but only one Giasone).