Act 1 Tours
While Argentina is not generally recognized as a major force in staging the works of Richard Wagner, this may be about to change in a significant way starting in 2012.
Bayreuth Festspiele Co-director Katharina Wagner’s has collaborated with the prestigious Teatro Colón on a unique reduction of her great-grandfather’s masterpiece, staged in four acts over seven hours and we are privileged to attend the world premiere on Tuesday November 27. This will be an extraordinary event and the starting point for an outstanding week of musical and cultural exploration in Buenos Aires, undoubtedly one of the world’s most exciting destinations.
The artistic credentials are impressive, with the orchestra and cast led by Maestro Julien Salemkour, a noted Wagner interpreter and honored as Staatskapellmeister at Berlin’s Staatsoper where he shares conducting assignments with Maestro Daniel Barenboim. Internationally acclaimed vocal artists include Linda Watson, Jukka Rasilainen, Andrew Shore, Daniel Sumegi and Stephen Humes.
The second Wagner highlight will come on our final full day when we travel to La Plata City and its Teatro Argentino for a performance of Die Walküre. The Teatro Argentino in La Plata is the second most important opera house in Argentina and was inaugurated in 1999 boasting a traditional European horseshoe configuration seating 2,000. Die Walküre is part of a very ambitious two-year project to present Wagner’s complete Ring Cycle (Das Rheingold was presented in March 2012 while Siegfried and Götterdämerung will be presented in 2013). The work is brought to the stage by the theater’s youthful, dynamic music director Alejo Peréz and Marcelo Lombardero, a singer and director and previously artistic director at the Teatro Colón. It is with great pleasure to confirm that bass baritone Daniel Sumegi (Hunding and Hagen in the Colón Ring) will accompany our party to La Plata for the performance.
During the week we enjoy music of another kind as part of a superb Tango Night and dinner at Café de los Angelitos, and another highlight will be the private dinner featuring the exquisite international cuisine of celebrated Chef Katrine in her private residence.
The party is based at Serena Hotel, ideally located at Libertad 1617 in Recoleta, the city’s most desirable and upscale neighborhood. The hotel is small in scale and was selected to provide intimate comfort and services in a quiet location (see serenahoteles.com). (Please note that we have included the option to upgrade to the nearby 5* Alvear Palace for those with that preference). Sightseeing and cultural touring is always an important part of the program and starts with a city tour, taking us to all the city highlights and ending with a memorable luncheon at the noted Cabaña Las Lilas in Puerto Madero. A fine arts specialist will lead us through the excellent MALBA and time will also be made available to explore two other exciting districts, Palermo Soho and San Telmo.
We are delighted that opera aficionado Diego Curutchet, perhaps Buenos Aires’ best-credentialed and experienced guide, will once again host the party in the city that he loves!
Overnight flights from/to North America arrive in the morning and depart in the evenings and, with a relatively small time difference the effects of jet lag are typically not a problem for most travelers. Airport transfers are included as part of the program.
Sunday November 25
Departures from North America for overnight flight to Buenos Aires’ Ezeiza International Airport.
Monday November 26
Diego will greet you from the flights and facilitate your transfer to Serena Hotel. The rest of the day is for relaxation and for an independent exploration of the immediate Recoleta neighborhood. Meet Diego in the early evening and walk to one of the excellent nearby restaurants for a Welcome Dinner.
Tuesday November 27
After breakfast (included daily) enjoy a relaxed independent morning and luncheon before leaving for the Teatro Colón and 2:30pm start of the Ring. Three intermissions punctuate the almost seven hour performance, with refreshments and a full buffet service included. Excellent Prime Orchestra Gala seating in rows 6-9 has been secured for our party. We return to the hotel late in the evening.
Wednesday November 28
Today we fully explore the city with Diego and a private motor coach, with visits to the iconic Café Tortoni, the Historic District, the Casa Rosada and the colorful La Boca barrio, ending at stylish Puerto Madero’s Cabaña Las Lilas for an unforgettable al fresco lunch overlooking the harbor. Returning mid-afternoon to the hotel, the balance of the day is open for personal plans.
Thursday November 29
Another exciting day is in prospect as we continue a tour that includes El Rosedal, the extensive Rose Garden in the Parque 3 Febrero, the Evita Perón Museum and then to MALBA (Museo de Arte Latinomericano de Buenos Aires), where we will be guided privately by one of this fine museum’s expert art historians. The rest of the afternoon is at leisure and we meet again in the early evening to transfer to the Café de los Angelitos for a spectacular tango show and lavish dinner.
Friday November 30
This morning transportation will be provided so that you may spend an independent morning exploring the delightful Palermo Soho district, with its shopping, galleries and lively restaurant scene. In the evening the party transfers to the residence of Chef Katrine, one of Buenos Aires’ culinary luminaries where we will dine privately on her fine international cuisine.
Saturday December 1
The morning is at leisure in preparation for the mid-afternoon departure by coach for the performance of Die Walküre at La Plata’s Teatro Argentino. The performance times are still to be announced. We are extremely pleased that the Wagnerian Daniel Sumegi will accompany us on this excursion to La Plata. Late return to the hotel.
Sunday December 2
To permit late afternoon check out for the evening flights we are including a paid seventh night in our program.
Our last day in the city is spent with a morning at leisure in the atmospheric San Telmo district where we will visit the Sunday flea market and MAMBA (Modern Art Museum) before enjoying a final well-paced lunch together at the exceptional Sagardi restaurant with tapas, "pinxos", fish dishes and excellent wines. After, transfer back to the hotel for final packing and preparation for departure. Early evening transfers to Ezeiza airport and return flights.
Post (or pre) tour extensions to other points in Argentina (e.g. Iguazu Falls, Mendoza or Patagonia) can be arranged on request.
A "Reciprocity Tax" is charged for entry in to Argentina and the current rate is $160 for US citizens and $70 for Canadian citizens). This is paid on arrival in cash or by a major credit card.
- Seven nights at Serena Hotel
- Breakfast daily
- Complimentary WIFI and Spa access
- Gala prime seating and full dining/refreshments at the Colón Ring’s opening day
- First category seating for Teatro Argentino’s Die Walküre
- Premium Dinner and Tango Night at the Café de los Angelito
- Private dining experience at Chef Katrine’s residence
- Lunch at Cabaña Las Lilas in Puerto Madero
- Welcome Dinner and Closing Lunch
- City tour and Cultural Tour with museum entrances
- Airport transfers
- In-city transfers to Palermo Soho and San Telmo
- Fully hosted by Diego Curutchet
Double or twin $ 4,850
Single supplement $ 900
Alvear Palace Upgrade (per room) $ 2,250
Cost includes Gala Colón Ring tickets at $ 900
Airfare and arrival taxes are not included.
Due to contractual commitments for tickets and ground services, a non-refundable deposit of $1,950 per person is required on reservation, with the balance due by September 25, 2012. Payment in full if registering after this date.
Trip cancellation insurance is strongly recommended to protect the cost of the trip and Act 1 Tours can provide competitive rates and arrange the coverage on your behalf. Some policies waive pre-existing medical conditions if purchased within 15 days of making the initial deposit.