Verdi Opera Special
Sundays in October
To this day, the wonderful works of the Italian composer Giuseppe Verdi remain omnipresent among the repertoire of opera houses around the world. This October, Stingray Classica viewers are given the opportunity to be enchanted by some of the most prestigious creations of the Busseto-born composer every Sunday afternoon. The Verdi Opera special begins on Sunday, October 6 with one of the most often performed operas of all time: Aida! The Orchestre et Choeurs de l’Opéra Royal de Wallonie are led by celebrated conductor Paolo Arrivabeni in a splendid staging, featuring Kristin Lewis, Massimiliano Pisapia, Nino Surgulazde and Mark Rucker. Broadcast on October 13 is this special's second gem: Verdi’s third opera and first popular success: Nabucco. This interpretation is led by Israeli conductor Daniel Oren. The following week, Massimo Zanetti leads a splendid interpretation of Luisa Miller, based on Friedrich Schiller’s “Kabale und Liebe”. On October 27, the special concludes with Rigoletto – an opera that Verdi, looking back on his life, considered his most accomplished and beautiful work. Under the musical direction of Renato Palumbo, the Orchestre et Choeurs de l’Opéra Royal de Wallonie present a beautiful interpretation of the tragic story of Rigoletto, Duke of Mantua’s buffoon and depraved seducer.
Verdi - Aida
Sunday, October 6
Conductor Paolo Arrivabeni leads the Orchestre et Choeurs de l’Opéra Royal de Wallonie in this performance of Aida. With 56 operas to his credit, this was his first time to conduct "Aida", although it is one of the most often performed operas around the world. Celebrated by both the public and critics, the Maestro enjoys a very successful international career. His wide repertoire revolves around the works of Italian composers of the 19th century. Aida is an opera in four acts by Giuseppe Verdi, based on the Italian libretto of Antonio Ghislanzoni. The plot is set in the so-called "Old Kingdom", presumably of Egypt. Aida revolves around intertwined story lines and love affairs complicated by political interference. Main characters Aida, an Ethiopian princess who has been enslaved by the Eqyptians, Egyptian military commander Radamès, whose feelings for her conflict with his political loyalty and the King's daughter Amneris, who is in love with Radamès. The opera was commissioned by Cairo's Khedivial Opera House and premiered there on 24 December 1871. Soloists of this interpretation, recorded 2014 in Liège, Belgium are Kristin Lewis, Massimiliano Pisapia, Nino Surgulazde, Mark Rucker, Luciano Montanaro, Roger Joakim, Chantal Glaude and Giovanni Iovino.
Verdi - Nabucco
Sunday, October 13
Israeli-born conductor Daniel Oren leads the Orchestra of the Arena di Verona in a magnificent interpretation of Giuseppe Verdi's Nabucco. Verdi’s third opera – but first great popular success – was created at the Teatro alla Scala in Milan in 1842, in the epicentre of the “Risorgimento” and the capital of Italian nationalism, at a time where the supporters of Italian independence from Austrian occupation were starting to make their voices heard. The "Chorus of the Hebrew slaves", pivotal point in the third act where the Jews, exiled from Babylone by Nabuchodonosor, mourn their country, "So Beautiful and Lost", immediately resonated with the Italian nationalists and has ever since been a symbol of Italian national identity. Daniel Oren, a true connoisseur of Verdi’s musical language as well as a regular guest at the Arena di Verona, conducts with great panache this "lyrical epic" that holds such a special place in the heart of all Italians. This interpretation was recorded 2017 and stars George Gagnidze, Susanna Branchini, Nino Surguladze, Rubens Pelizzari, Stanislav Trofimov and more.
Verdi - Luisa Miller
Sunday, October 20
Under the musical direction of Massimo Zanetti, the Orchestre et Choeurs de l’Opéra Royal de Wallonie present the opera "Luisa Miller". As the result of the collaboration between Verdi and the Neapolitan librettist Salvatore Cammarano, Luisa Miller is based on a play written by Friedrich Schiller titled Intrigue and Love. The work was composed in 1849 for the Teatro San Carlo in Naples. It marks a turning point in Verdi’s production and life, since the composer had moved back to Busseto, his birthplace, while writing it. As a consequence, Verdi distanced himself from patriotic heroism, a typical characteristic found in his early operas. This becomes obvious in his work: the action of Luisa Miller is not part of great historical events, but revolves around love affairs in a simple Tyrolean village. This interpretation was recorded 2014 at the Opéra Royal de Wallonie, Liège and stars Patrizia Ciofi, Gregory Kunde, Nicola Alaimo, Bálint Szabó, Luciano Montanaro, Alexise Yerna, Cristina Melis and Stefano De Rosa.
Verdi - Rigoletto
Sunday, October 27
Under the musical direction of Renato Palumbo, the Orchestre et Choeurs de l’Opéra Royal de Wallonie present the opera "Rigoletto". At the end of his life, Italian composer Giuseppe Verdi considered Rigoletto as his most beautiful and accomplished opera. Inspired by Victor Hugo's play "Le roi s’amuse", created for the French Theater in 1832, Verdi is particularly intrigued with the buffoon’s tragic character. Despite the strong pressure of the moral and religious censorship of the time, Rigoletto - after its premiere on March 11th, 1851 in Venice – was received with great enthusiasm. The next day, all of Venice hummed the melody of 'La donna è mobile'! The plot of the opera revolves around the struggles of Rigoletto, Duke of Mantua’s buffoon and depraved seducer and his daughter, Gilda. This interpretation was recorded 2015 at the Opéra Royal de Wallonie, Liège and stars Leo Nucci, Desirée Rancatore, Gianluca Terranova, Luciano Montanaro, Carla Dirlikov, Benoit Delvaux and more.