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Opéra National De Paris: Rigoletto
Tue, 26th April, 2016 @ 18:20pm - 21:30pm£8 – £12
Rigoletto, court jester to the libertine Duke of Mantua, is cursed by the father of one of the Duke’s victims for his irreverent laughter. When the Duke seduces Rigoletto’s daughter Gilda, it seems the curse is taking effect…
Giuseppe Verdi wrote in 1855 that Rigoletto, based on Victor Hugo’s play Le Roi s’amuse, was his ‘best opera’. He had to overcome state censorship to stage it – the censors objected to its depiction of an immoral ruler – but he was vindicated by the premiere’s huge success in 1851. Rigoletto was performed 250 times in the next 10 years and has remained one of the most popular of all operas.
Between the frivolous, licentious Duke, and Gilda, a victim of the ignorance which holds her captive, stands the double-faceted character of Rigoletto, both buffoon and curse-obsessed father. Monstrous and heartrending, grotesque and sublime, the title role reaches its apogee in the aria “Cortigiani, vil razza dannata”, whose descending movement, from the explosion of rage to the moment of entreaty, confirms the composer’s ability to adapt a form inherited from bel canto to theatrical realism. Under the baton of Nicola Luisotti, this new production of Rigoletto marks director Claus Guth’s first collaboration with the Paris Opera.