„Abitare l’Opera“ (“Inhabiting the Opera”) is the Matera European Capital of Culture 2019 project co-produced by the Matera Basilicata 2019 Foundation alongside the Teatro San Carlo in Naples aimed at staging Mascagni’s masterpiece “ Cavalleria Rusticana „.

The Sassi will be the evocative setting for the opera directed by Giorgio Barberio Corsetti.

Residents of Matera will be given the opportunity to feature in the first opera ever created in the city’s natural theater. The performance will be divided into two parts: the first, called “Prologue in the Sassi” from the Sasso Barisano will wind its way downhill to the Sasso Caveoso, through Via Madonna delle Virtù. The prologue consists of 7 stages inspired by the „seven capitalist sins“, which portray the excesses of contemporary society; the second part is the mise-en-scène of Pietro Mascagni’s „Cavalleria Rusticana“ by the Chorus, Orchestra and Soloists of the Teatro San Carlo in Naples, between Piazza San Pietro Caveoso and the Church of Santa Maria di Idris .

Residents will be part of the great construction site of „Abitare l’opera“ as they will feature in the scenes of „The seven capitalist sins“ as well as in some brief mass scenes from Pietro Mascagni’s work, with choirs and simple theatrics.

Citizens who wished to join the creation of the show are participating in a workshop, working closely with the director himself, his staff and 20 performers selected by the Teatro San Carlo throughout Italy. Great emphasis is placed on the theme of Teatro Canzone (Song-Theater), and how to transform traditional folk music from Matera and Basilicata into scores for Chorus. Workshop also focuses on how to perform dance group actions  that, together with traditional and modern songs, will characterize the scenes of „The Seven Capitalist Sins“.

The show will make its debut on August 2 and on August 3 will be also broadcast live on Rai in Eurovision.