Motezuma, Vivaldi’s Forgotten Opera


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Newly reconstructed, the work is born again!

Montreal, (Quebec), January 20, 2020 – Vivaldi’s opera Motezuma was discovered in the archives of the Berlin Sing-Akademie in 2002. The work has been restored and completed by conductor Matthias Maute, artistic director of Ensemble Caprice. The project is a collaboration between the Bach Society of Minnesota, Early Music Seattle, and Ensemble Caprice. The cast will feature artists hailing from Montreal, Mexico, and the USA. Motezuma will be presented on February 4, 2020, at 7:30 p.m. in Bourgie Hall, located at 1339 Sherbrooke St. West.

An International Sensation

The opera Motezuma, first performed in 1733, has created quite a stir in the baroque music world: indeed, although the complete libretto of this Vivaldi opera was recently found, more than half the music was missing!

Many sections of the original score were lost. Conductor Matthias Maute set about composing the missing parts in authentic baroque style for the Montreal performance of the work.

Ensemble Caprice will present a semi-scenic version of Motezuma on February 4, 2020. In this reconstruction, the recitatives have been replaced with dialogues spoken by an actor in order to intensify the Aztec emperor’s experience of the situation.

The opera’s intrigue is loosely based on the Spanish conquest of Mexico, and recounts the story of the 1519 meeting between Motezuma, the last of the Aztec emperors, and Spanish general Hernan Cortés (called Fernando in the opera). Conflicts arise between the two quick-tempered leaders when Teutile, Motezuma’s daughter, falls in love with Fernando’s brother Ramiro. This story of passionate love will lead to a happy, but totally fictious, ending.

With a cast including:

Marduk Salam (Mexico):  Motezuma (Singer)
Lisa Rodriguez (Mexico): Teutile
Nerea Berraondo (Spain/USA): Mitrena
Nayelli Acevedo (Mexico): Asprano
Nelle June Anderson (USA): Ramiro
Nicholas Chalmers (USA): Fernando
Pedro Juan Fonseca (Puerto Rico/USA): Motezuma (Actor)

2020 USA Tour

Ensemble Caprice is preparing to take this production on tour, the largest tour in the group’s history: February 8, 2020:  Seattle, Washington. February 9, 2020:  Seattle, Washington. February 11, 2020:  Mankato, Minnesota. February 12, 2020:  St-Paul, Minnesota. February 14, 2020:  Miami, Florida. April 3, 2020:  Marshall, Minnesota. April 5, 2020:  Washington, DC. April 6, 2020: Washington, DC

About Ensemble Caprice 

For 30 years, CAPRICE has made a significant contribution to the advancement of musical culture in Quebec and has been bringing the great works of the classical music repertoire to Montreal and to the various regions of the province. Each year, Caprice performs some 50 concerts on four continents and hires over 600 musicians. Besides its regular Montreal concert series, the ensemble pe-rforms on tour in Canada, Europe, Asia, Latin America and South Africa.

This page is also available in / Cette page est également disponible en: frFrancais (French)


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