Opera North - Rigoletto
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New production. Rigoletto exists on the margins of a world owned by the privileged few – and is despised by them for his difference. He is in the pay of the Duke of Mantua, a man who is living proof that absolute power corrupts absolutely. Twisted inside by the life he has been forced to lead, Rigoletto is both feared for his sharp tongue and ridiculed for his appearance by the Duke’s entourage. The only thing he lives for is his daughter, Gilda, of whom he is obsessively protective. When, finally, a combination of bitterness and bravura get the better of him, the consequences for his most precious possession are fatal.
Verdi clothes this hard-hitting masterpiece in some of his most impassioned music. Rigoletto contains one of the most popular tenor arias of all time – the Duke’s ‘La donna è mobile – but the jauntiness of the tune takes on a much more chilling aspect in the context of a drama which explores the extremes of emotional exploitation.
This new production of Rigoletto is conducted by Opera North’s Music Director Garry Walker, and directed by one of the UK’s leading theatre artists, Femi Elufowoju Jr., who makes his opera directing debut. American baritone Eric Greene, whose previous work for Opera North includes Amonasro in Aida and Billy Bigelow in Carousel, sings the title role in a work of shattering power.
Music Giuseppe Verdi
Libretto Francesco Maria Piave
First performance Venice, 1851
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