George Gagnidze in Teatro San Carlo cast for 'Tosca'

George Gagnidze will be cast as Scarpia in Teatro San Carlo and Metropolitan Opera in the new year. Photo via George Gagnidze on Facebook., 17 Dec 2019 - 17:17, Tbilisi,Georgia

Opera star George Gagnidze will interpret the role of Scarpia, a protagonist in Giacomo Puccini's classic Tosca, in a run of a new production at Naples' Teatro San Carlo next month.

Gagnidze, who debuted at the Italian venue past summer in Cavalleria Rusticana, is billed to appear in the role of the chief of the secret police of Rome in the Napoleonic era in three shows of the three-hour staging of one of the most recognised works by Giacomo Puccini.

The Georgian baritone will be cast in the show alongside Carmen Giannattasio and Monica Zanettin - alternating in the role of Tosca - as well as Fabio Sartori and Arsen Soghomonyan who will portray Cavaradossi.

The Teatro San Carlo orchestra and chorus will be led by conductor Donato Renzetti on the backdrop of sets by Mimmo Paladino and with actors dressed in costumes by Massimo Cantini Parrini.

Gagnidze will follow up his Naples appearance in the opera with a five-show bill of a Metropolitan Opera staging of 'Tosca':

Tosca follows its characters in the year 1800, following the repulsion of the 1789 occupation of Rome by Napoleon's troops.

A preview from the Naples theatre says Puccini "constructs the work around the negative figure of Scarpia and creates a score rich in dynamic nuances" for the opera.

For Gagnidze, a bill in the same role at New York's Metropolitan Opera will follow in the new year, with five appearances between March 26 and April 18 in a David McVicar staging.

At the American venue he will be on stage with a roster of fellow artists including Anna Netrebko and Jennifer Rowley - as Tosca - and Najmiddin Mavlyanov and Brian Jagde as Cavaradossi.

The singer this week reminisced about his 2009 role at the venue by telling his social media followers he was "very happy to revisit the role of Scarpia" in New York "after 10 years and about 100 more performances" since the original event, which has been recently released as a full video recording.