Graduated at the Piccolo Teatro in Milan and in Philosophy at the University of Pavia, he is active since 1988 as a director of drama and opera in the main Italian and international theaters.
Among his first creations: Aleksandr Nevskij Video by Prokof’ev (Konzerthaus in Vienna, RomaEuropa Festival, Teatro Massimo in Palermo) and Golem by and with Moni Ovadia (Rome, Milan, Paris, La MaMa Theater in New York).
Among his opera directings: Don Carlo (Vienna State Opera), Rigoletto (La Fenice Theater in Venice) and Verdi’s La Traviata (Municipal Theater of São Paulo), Puccini’s Madama Butterfly (Bari, Venice, Beijing, Seoul), Oberon by Weber (Théâtre du Capitole of Toulouse), Ermione and Elisabetta, regina d’Inghilterra (Rossini Opera Festival of Pesaro), Die Zauberflöte by Mozart (Reggio Emilia, Edinburgh Festival), A Midsummer Night’s Dream by Britten (Bari and Reggio Emilia), Beethoven’s Fidelio, Wagner’s Tannhäuser, Berg’s Wozzeck and Mozart’s Così fan tutte (Rome’s Santa Cecilia Academy), Britten’s The Rape of Lucretia (Genoa and Madrid’s Teatro Real), Puccini’s Tosca (Osaka ), Laborinthus II of Berio, Pollicino of Henze and Experimentum Mundi of Battistelli (Salzburg Festival). His staging of Il prigioniero and Il volo di notte by Dallapiccola (Maggio Musicale Fiorentino) won the Abbiati Prize for best show made in Italy in 2004.
From 2002 to 2012 he was the Artistic Director of “I Teatri” Foundation in Reggio Emilia.
In 2012 he received the Oscar for Opera as best director.
Recently he directed Don Carlos at the Wiener Staatsoper, Puccini’s Tosca (Teatro Comunale di Bologna, Teatro Regio di Torino, Seoul Arts Center), Cosi fan tutte at the Teatro Comunale in Bologna, new productions of La Traviata for the Teatro Coccia in Novara (2014) and Pelléas et Melisande by Debussy for the Maggio Musicale Fiorentino (2015). In 2016 he made a new Nabucco (Lyric Opera of Chicago, and then at the Royal Opera House in London), Verdi’s Attila at the Teatro Massimo in Palermo and at the Teatro La Fenice in Venice and a reprise of Falstaff at the Teatro Lirico in Cagliari. In 2017 he returned to the Wiener Staatsoper with Il Trovatore and Don Carlos, at the Teatro Regio in Turin with Falstaff and at the Teatro Comunale in Bologna with Tosca. His recent and future engagement include Macbeth at the Verdi Festival in Parma and Cagliari, Rigoletto at the Rome Opera House and Attila in Chicago.