Riccardo Frizza (born 1971 in Brescia) studied at the Milan Conservatory and the Accademia Chigiana di Siena and is considered to be one of the leading conductors of his generation, particularly devoted to the nineteenth century Italian operatic repertoire.
In Italy he is a frequent guest at Teatro alla Scala in Milan, the Maggio Musicale Fiorentino, the Teatro Regio in Turin, La Fenice in Venice, Opera di Roma, Teatro San Carlo, the Rossini Opera Festival in Pesaro, the Verdi Festival in Parma and the Macerata Opera Festival. He has conducted at the Opéra National de Paris, the Lyric Opera of Chicago, San Francisco Opera, New York Metropolitan Opera, the Liceu in Barcelona, Teatro Real in Madrid and at the Bayerische Staatsoper in Münich.
Orchestral engagements have seen him step onto the podium at the Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia, the Gewandhaus in Leipzig and the Dresden Sächsische Staatskapelle and conduct the Orchestra Sinfonica “Giuseppe Verdi” di Milano, the Mahler Chamber Orchestra, Saint Petersburg Philharmonic Orchestra, London Philharmonic Orchestra, Tokyo Symphony Orchestra and the Tokyo Philharmonic Orchestra. Engagements in recent years have included Norma at the Lyric Opera of Chicago, Rigoletto at the Liceu in Barcelona, Lucia di Lammermoor at Teatro la Fenice and in Bilbao, I Puritani in Budapest, Falstaff at the Parma Verdi Festival and in Dallas, Il pirata at Teatro alla Scala and Anna Bolena in Rome.
More recent noteworthy productions from the 2020/2021 season include Rigoletto at the Maggio Musicale Fiorentino, The Three Queens concert with Sondra Radvanovski at the Gran Teatre del Liceu, La Sonnambula at the Théatre des Champs-Elysées, the concert entitled “Ritorno a Napoli” at the Toscanini Festival in Parma, the Belcanto Gala at the Teatro San Carlo, La Cenerentola at the Teatro Real in Madrid, the inauguration of the Donizetti Opera in Bergamo with L’elisir d’amore, “Omaggio a Caruso” at the Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia in Rome, concerts with the Haydn Orchestra and La clemenza di Tito at ABAO Bilbao Opera. Highlights from the 2021/2022 season include The Three Queens and Il barbiere di Siviglia at the Teatro San Carlo, L’amico Fritz at the Teatro del Maggio Musicale Fiorentino, Lucia di Lammermoor at the New York Metropolitan Opera, Il Trovatore at the Gran Teatre del Liceu in Barcelona, Simon Boccanegra during the Festival Verdi at the Teatro Regio di Parma and La Favorite at the Donizetti Opera.
Since 2017, Riccardo Frizza has been music director at the Donizetti Opera Festival in Bergamo, where in 2018 he conducted Il castello di Kenilworth, and in 2019 Lucrezia Borgia for the first performance of the new critical edition of the score published by Ricordi and Fondazione Teatro Donizetti, Marin Faliero and Belisario in 2020 and L’elisir d’amore in 2021, La Favorite in 2022. His Donizetti repertoire includes Lucia di Lammermoor, Linda di Chamounix, Maria Stuarda (at the Metropolitan Opera with Sondra Radvanovsky), La fille du régiment, Lucrezia Borgia (at the San Francisco Opera with Renée Fleming), Roberto Devereux (again in San Francisco), and Anna Bolena (at the Opera di Roma).
Highlights of his 2021/2022 season include Le tre regine and Il barbiere di Siviglia at the Teatro San Carlo, L’amico Fritz at the Teatro del Maggio Musicale Fiorentino, Lucia di Lammermoor at the Metropolitan Opera in New York, Il Trovatore at the Gran Teatre del Liceu in Barcelona, Simon Boccanegra at the Teatro Regio Verdi Festival in Parma and La Favorite at the Donizetti Opera.
In June 2021 he won the Ópera XXI award for best music director. The accolade was awarded by Ópera XXI, the association of theatres, festivals and opera companies of Spain, for the outstanding Lucia di Lammermoor which was staged for ABAO Bilbao Ópera in October 2019.
In March 2022, his appointment as Chief Conductor of the Hungarian Radio Symphony Orchestra and Choir was announced during their concert in which he conducted Mahler’s Second Symphony. He will return to the Hungarian podium in 2023 to conduct works by Puccini, Fauré, Rossini, Debussy, Rodrigo and Prokofiev.
He has an impressive discography, especially in the field of opera. In 2022 three CDs by artists of the caliber of Sondra Radvanovsky (The Three Queens, Pentatone), Nadine Sierra (Made for opera, Deutsche Grammophon) and Javier Camarena (Signor Gaetano, Pentatone) were released and all well-received by the international press.