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The Royal Opera fields super-subs for Scarpia

The second cast of this year's Tosca gains a couple of starry villains

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The Royal Opera House has announced the withdrawal of Romanian baritone Sebastian Catana from the role of Scarpia in the second cast of this year's revival of Puccini's Tosca. The role will now be sung by Welsh bass-baritone Bryn Terfel on 16, 19 and 26 June and Italian baritone Lucio Gallo on 21 June.

Bryn Terfel as Scarpia in 2011 (Royal Opera)
© ROH/Catherine Ashmore

Bryn Terfel previously sang the role of Scarpia with the Royal Opera in Jonathan Kent's production in 2006, 2009 and 2011. He has also played the dastardly police chief for the Metropolitan Opera in New York, Munich, La Scala, Milan, and most recently in Berlin. He will also appear with the Royal Opera this season as Méphistophélès in Faust.

Lucio Gallo previously sang the role of Scarpia for the Royal Opera for one performance in 2008 and has also sung the role in Berlin, Munich and Zurich. His most recent performances at Covent Garden were as Iago in Otello, the title role in Gianni Schicchi and Michele in Il tabarro, all in the 2011/2012 Season.

No reason has been given for Catana's withdrawal, but fans of Gallo and in particular Terfel are likely to snap up the many currently unsold seats in no time. The relevant Royal Opera web page is here.