Lindy Hume, director
Carlo Montanaro, conductor
Giuseppe Verdi – Rigoletto
Verdi’s tense and brutal tale of a megalomaniac’s bitter minion caught in a web of lechery, betrayal, and revenge runs the emotional gamut in true operatic fashion. Hugely popular ever since its Venice premiere, the indelible melodrama boasts memorably complex characters and an action-packed plot propelled by a parade of iconic, unflaggingly brilliant music, especially the iconic La donna è mobile.
It’s Election Night at the Presidential Palace and the Duke of Mantua is holding court. Contrasting the bawdy ostentation of the privileged and powerful with the gritty squalor of Rigoletto’s working class struggles, director Lindy Hume pulls no punches drawing comparisons to newsmakers of today.
This performance will be performed in Italian with English subtitles. Performance time is 2 hours and 30 minutes, including 1 intermission.
Wondering if this opera is appropriate for your children?
Movie-style rating: PG-13 for:
– Violence, including murder and suicide
– Sensuality and sexual violence
– Brief nudity: in one scene a male character is fully exposed from the back.
The music of Rigoletto is catchy and familiar to many audience members, but much of the story revolves around mature content including abuse of power, sexual assault, rape, murder (one character is an assassin and another is killed on stage), and suicide. Themes include teasing and bullying, judging people based on looks, self-hatred, chastity vs. promiscuity, and when overprotection becomes child abuse.
The Duke, a central character, is a womanizer who brags about his conquests. In some cases these encounters are consensual; in other cases the audience does not see the entire event and consent is unclear. This production may trigger strong emotions for people who have experienced rape or sexual assault.
Some viewers will see an immediate connection to present-day politics in various parts of the world. This staging of Rigoletto was originally meant to highlight the misdeeds of Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi.