22 June – 2 July 2024

The Royal Opera is delighted to announce full casting details as the Company prepare to return to Japan on tour next summer for the first time since 2019. 

In his final appointment as Music Director of The Royal Opera, Antonio Pappano will be conducting two spectacular casts in Oliver Mears’ darkly elegant production of Verdi’s Rigoletto and Andrei Șerban’s classic staging of Puccini’s Turandot

The outstanding cast for Rigoletto includes Etienne Dupuis (Rigoletto), Nadine Sierra (Gilda), Javier Camarena (Duke of Mantua), Alexander Köpeczi (Sparafucile), Anne Marie Stanley (Maddalena), and Eric Greene (Count Monterone). Both Dupuis and Sierra have recently performed on the Covent Garden stage, meeting great critical acclaim. Dupuis performed the role of Carlo di Vargas in The Royal Opera’s recent revival of La forza del destino, and was described by the Financial Times as ‘a first-rate Verdi baritone’. Nadine Sierra made her Covent Garden debut in 2023 with the role of Adina in L’elisir d’amore and was celebrated as an ‘entirely captivating’ performer. Current Jette Parker Artists Veena Akama-Makia, Josef Jeongmeen Ahn, Grisha Martirosyan, Ryan Vaughan Davies, and former JPA Blaise Malaba, also join the cast. 

Sondra Radvanovsky (Princess Turandot) and Brian Jadge (Calaf) will lead an incredible cast for four performances of Turandot. The pair performed together in The Royal Opera’s 5-star production of La forza del destino at the beginning of this Season, receiving commendation for their ‘thrilling’ partnership. The cast also includes former JPA Masabane Cecilia Rangwanasha as Liù and John Relyea as Timur. Hansung Yoo and Aled Hall reprise their roles as Ping and Pang, having performed in the most recent revival of Turandot at the Royal Opera House. JPA Michael Gibson will perform the role of Pong. Alexander Kravets (Emperor Altoum) and Blaise Malaba (Mandarin) also join the cast for Turandot

The Royal Opera will perform Rigoletto for two performances at Kanagawa Kenmin Hall in Yokohama on 22 and 25 June, and a further two at the NHK Hall in Tokyo on 28 and 30 June. The four performances of Turandot will take place at the Tokyo Bunka Kaikan on 23, 26 and 29 June, and 2 July.  

Oliver Mears, Director of The Royal Opera said: ‘We are enormously grateful for the support of our Japanese audiences, and so appreciate the kindness and hospitality they extend to us. I’m honoured that my own production of Rigoletto will receive its Japanese premiere on this tour – audiences will be treated to the electricity in Maestro Pappano’s conducting of Verdi’s remarkable score alongside an outstanding cast.’   

Antonio Pappano, Music Director of The Royal Opera said: ‘It’s a pleasure to be bringing these incredible works to Japan – with two stellar casts, our Royal Operas Chorus and of course Orchestra of the Royal Opera House. This tour will be even more special as it will mark my final performances as Music Director of The Royal Opera, and I can’t think of two better productions – both are perfect pieces of theatre full of musical and dramatic sequences with an inexorable quality – one hit after another.’