Tuesday July 9th, 7:30 p.m.

THE SUNKEN BELL (La Campana Sommersa)

An Opera in Four Acts

by Ottorino Respighi (1879 – 1936)

based on Gerhart Hauptmann's 1924 symbolist drama
Die versunkene Glocke

Premièred in Hamburg on 18 November 1927





Old Witch

First Elf

Second Elf

Third Elf






First Child

Second Child


Valentina Farcas, soprano

Angelo Villari, tenor

Maria Luigia Borsi, soprano

Agostina Smimmero, mezzo soprano

Martina Bortolotti, soprano

Francesca Paola Geretto, soprano

Olesya Berman Chuprinova, mezzo soprano

Thomas Gazheli, baritone

Filippo Adami, tenor

Dario Russo, bass-baritone

Nicola Ebau, baritone

Mauro Secci, tenor

Martino Corda

Letizia Puddu

Sandro Meloni


A 2015 production from the Teatro Lirico di Cagliari

Direction by Pier Francesco Maestrini

Set and Projection Design by Christian Fenouillat

Costume Design by Marco Nateri

Lighting Design by Pascal Mérat

Orchestra of the Teatro Lirico di Cagliari

Conducted by Donato Renzetti


Act One
The skilled bell-maker Enrico strays by chance into fairy territory, where his finest bell is caused by magic to tumble into a lake.

He is brought home wounded; but the elf Rautendelein, who has fallen in love with him, decides to enter the mortal world in order to follow him home. In vain, Ondino endeavours to dissuade her.

Act Two
When Rautendelein kisses his eyes, Enrico has a vision that abruptly eclipses his home life: deserting his wife Magda, he withdraws into a magic workshop on the mountain, where his work rises to supremely inspired heights.

Act Three
Enrico determines to found a new religion, for which he is designing a temple. The Priest tries in vain to dissuade him, with Enrico replying, "It more likely that my sunken bell should ring". But the lost sunken bell does indeed toll as news reaches him that Magda has killed herself. Filled with remorse, he rejects Rautendelein, who returns to her own kind and marries Ondino.

Act Four
Enrico finds he cannot live without Rautendelein. An old witch grants his wish to see her once again, and she appears to him "white as the Angel of Death". She is allowed to comfort him as he dies.