Anna Netrebko as Leonora sings 'Pace, pace mio Dio' aria in Christof Loy's production of Verdi's sweepingly ambitious opera on war, religion, love and fate.
La forza del destino is one of Verdi's most ambitious scores. Its overture - which introduces us to the sinister motif signifying Fate - is one of his most memorable. The opera also contains some of Verdi’s most brilliant choral writing, including Act III’s stirring ‘Rataplan’ chorus, and several beautiful and intimate arias such as Leonora's ardent Act IV 'Pace, pace mio Dio!'. There's comedy too with the scenes for the greedy monk Fra Melitone. Christof Loy's colourful and spectacular production reflects the kaleidoscopic nature of Verdi's opera, where intense personal dramas play out against a background of war, and in which religion plays an ambiguous role.
Verdi and his librettist and friend Francesco Maria Piave based La forza del destino on Ángel de Saavedra's highly dramatic play Don Alvaro, o la fuerzo del sino, and also incorporated material from Schiller's Wallenstein's Camp for Act III's military scenes. Following Forza's 1862 St Petersburg premiere, Verdi made extensive revisions to the score. The most substantial of these were a new overture, and a less melodramatic ending, in which Don Alvaro remained alive rather than committing suicide. The revised Forza, the version best known today, had its premiere on 27 February 1869 at La Scala, Milan.
Baritone Dmitiri Hvorostovsky, who has been battling a brain tumor that forced a hiatus, surprised the 2017 Metropolitan Opera Gala audience with a performance of “Cortigiani, vil razza dannata" from Verdi's "Rigoletto."
The Opera recording event of the year. This magnificent recording of Aida, made in Rome, rises to all the musical and dramatic challenges presented by Verdi’s richly-coloured Egyptian epic. Antonio Pappano, once again proving his mastery of Italian opera, moves between sumptuous grandeur and touching intimacy. The responses of the Orchestra e Coro dell’Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia are both immediate and vibrant, while the singers – Anja Harteros, Jonas Kaufmann, Ekaterina Semenchuk, Ludovic Tézier and Erwin Schrott – do justice to every facet of their roles.
Le rose del volto già son pallenti; L'amore d'Alfredo pur esso mi manca, Conforto, sostegno dell'anima stanca Ah, della traviata sorridi al desio; A lei, deh, perdona; tu accoglila, o Dio, Or tutto finì.
Le gioie, i dolori tra poco avran fine, La tomba ai mortali di tutto è confine! Non lagrima o fiore avrà la mia fossa, Non croce col nome che copra quest'ossa! Ah, della traviata sorridi al desio; A lei, deh, perdona; tu accoglila, o Dio, Or tutto finì.