2 Riverside Drive
New York, NY
Press for Il Piccolo Marat
See all Teatro Grattacielo Reviews
Avery Fisher Hall, NYC, 4-13-09
from The New York Times
An Unfamiliar Rescue Tale From a Familiar Composer
By Steve Smith
April 14, 2009
The Italian composer Pietro Mascagni hardly qualifies as a one-hit wonder, but you would never guess it to see just one work, “Cavalleria Rusticana,” turn up season after season. A few other Mascagni operas, like “L’Amico Fritz” and “Iris,” hover at the periphery of the standard repertory. The rest have fallen into neglect, save for the efforts of specialist companies. One such outfit, Teatro Grattacielo, celebrated its 15th anniversary at Avery Fisher Hall on Monday night with a concert performance of “Il Piccolo Marat,” Mascagni’s 14th opera, heard in its United States première. Completed in 1921 and successfully staged in Rome that year, this three-act work is a classic rescue plot set in revolutionary France.
Read more >>
Tenor Richard Crawley with the Teatro Grattacielo orchestra,
conducted by David Wroe,
in Mascagni's Il Piccolo Marat, April 13, 2009
See Anthony Tommasini's groundbreaking article in
The New York Times
on "Il Piccolo Marat," Teatro Grattacielo and
Verismo in the 21st century here
In Mascagni "Marat," Grattacielo Triumphs over Adversity & Unveils Verismo with a Vengeance
by Bruce Michael Gelbert
Pietro Mascagni’s vehement and tonally colorful “Il Piccolo Marat” (1921), to Giovacchino Forzano’s libretto, received an exciting North American premiere, in concert at Avery Fisher Hall on April 13, thanks to Teatro Grattacielo. The opera looks at the French Revolution gone awry, its ideals degenerating into tyranny and terror. Founding Executive and Artistic Director Duane D. Printz’s plucky Grattacielo, specializing in the heated hyperrealism of late 19th century and early 20th century Italian verismo opera and celebrating its 15th anniversary, emerged triumphant, although three of its scheduled male leads withdrew from the performance, forcing their worthy replacements to learn punishing roles in just a few weeks.
Read more >>
From Opera Magazine (UK)
by David Shengold
New York. For 15 seasons now, Duane Printz's valiant Teatro Grattacielo has performed signal service for New York's opera-going public, yearly presenting little-heard verismo operas in fitting style... On April 13 in Avery Fisher Hall... Mascagni's 14th opera, Il Piccolo Marat, was added to the company's list of US firsts. Grattacielo did handsomely by the piece, withal not a rediscovery waiting for the stage...
David Wroe, Grattacielo's music director as of last year, conducted his large, skilled forces incisively, including a huge chorus. This body, under Mark Shapiro, blended well and sounded healthy.... Richard Crawley brought a sturdy, useful tenor with seemingly tireless b-flats to the title role. It is good to have Paula Delligatti's clear, idiomatic lyric soprano back in New York; textual command and a pleasing ability to float distinguished her Mariella. The most exciting performances were those of two young baritones: the dynamic, sonorous, verismo-steeped Joshua Benaim as the idealistic (and savagely martyred) Soldato, and--best vocal actor of the whole cast--Daniel Ihn-Kyu Lee, capably shouldering at short notice the leading role of Il Carpentiere besides three comprimario parts. One wished the striking-voiced mezzo Elizabeth Batton (La Principessa) had had more to sing. The baritone Nelson Martinez (Il Capitano) and tenor Hugo Vera also showed fine instruments.
Teatro Grattacielo Triumphs at Avery Fisher Hall With United States premiere of Pietro Mascagni’s Il Piccolo Marat
A review by Nino Pantano
The composer Pietro Mascagni (1863-1945) is remembered primarily as the composer of the great Verismo masterpiece Cavalleria Rusticana at the age of 27 which premiered in Rome’s Costanzi Theater in 1890 and is still popular in all the world’s great and small opera houses. Mascagni had some degree of success with the charming pastoral L’Amico Fritz and other works once popular but now obscure, like Iris and Lodoletta (which were sung by Caruso and Gigli).
Il Piccolo Marat is Mascagni’s 14th and next to last work and had a spectacular premiere also at the Costanzi Theater in Rome with over 50 curtain calls on May 2, 1921. Ms. Duane D. Printz, founder Impressaria and fac-to-tum of Teatro Grattacielo chose this violent, impassioned French Revolution based work in its North American Premiere to celebrate the 15th anniversary of the Teatro Grattacielo. Judging from the large enthusiastic crowd at Avery Fisher Hall, on April 13th, her efforts have earned this unique company quite a following.
Read More >>
Mascagni Work Gets Its U.S. Première
By Peter G. Davis
April 16, 2009
NEW YORK -- There are all sorts of myths about Pietro Mascagni. The most popular is that he achieved his greatest success in 1890 at the age of 26 with "Cavalleria Rusticana" and spent the rest of his life writing feeble sequels, all miserable failures. The other is that he and most other Italian composers of his generation devoted themselves exclusively to a style of opera known as "verismo," works that trafficked in brutally realistic melodramas torn from life. We are seldom allowed to test that received wisdom, but once a year a plucky organization named Teatro Grattacielo gives us the opportunity to do so by selecting an opera from this neglected era and presenting it in concert. On April 13 in Avery Fisher Hall the choice fell on Mascagni's "Il Piccolo Marat," first performed in 1921 in Rome to tumultuous applause and heard here in its U.S. premiere.
Teatro Grattacielo has done it again, the audience seemed to love what it heard; best of all, there are many more worthy discoveries waiting for this invaluable organization's attention.
Read More >> (requires subscription)
by Franco Corsaro
19 April, 2009
Of the fifteen operas of Pietro Mascagni, his "Cavalleria Rusticana" continues to be the one-act masterwork that remains among the most popular in theaters around the world. Of the other operas written after his great success on 17 May, 1890 at the Costanzi Theater in Rome, only two have had modest success in Italy: We have seen "L'Amico Fritz" on stage at the Brancaccio Theater in Rome in the 1995-96 season, and "Iris" at the Teatro dell'Opera on the 50th anniversary of the composer's death in Rome at the end of the war. ... Contrary to present-day Italian successes, it is in America, especially New York that a number of various opera companies have performed works considered 'rare.' In recent years, among the most distinguished of these is Teatro Grattacielo, which presented "Il Piccolo Marat" in concert version on Monday at Avery Fisher Hall. ...
The rollicking success of this American 'premiere' of the opera was due to the great Teatro Grattacielo Orchestra, Cantori New York Chorus, and the Long Island University Chorus, who were optimal singers, all under the direction of Maestro David Wroe, giving it the success it warranted.
"E Le Nave Va"
Teatro Grattacielo presented what it calls the North American premiere
of a concert version of Mascagni's 1921 opera, Il Piccolo Marat,
tonight, and despite what looked like the elements of a train wreck in
repeated cancellations of the principal cast, I thought the evening
very successful one for this company, and to judge from the applause
at Avery Fisher, so did most of the rest of the audience.
Read More >>