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La traviata Verdi

A brilliant display of fireworks in Piazza De Ferrari set the scene for an equally brilliant Traviata. which inaugurated the opera season in Genoa. The theatre was full and the audience elegantly attired, probably unprepared for this unexpected and surprising new reading of this favourite opera, the key for which director Giorgio Gallione had found in Verdi himself

Italy

TEATRO CARLO FELICE GENOA

Music ****

Staging ****

The Prelude begins with the descending sad, premonitory, mourning notes of the violins. Gallione seizes on this musical idea to create a symbolic, visionary re-evocation of Violetta’s tragic solitude, a flashback to the vicissitudes of the protagonist. The spirit of Death is present from the start and the curtain rises on an icy waste in which an illuminated, wintry, white tree is the only element. Ghostly figures contort themselves and a shrouded bloodstained corpse is dragged across the stage. Black mourners wielding open umbrellas encircle the stage. Violetta herself appears in a sparkling white ball gown, stretching out her hands towards her doctor, Grenvil (Maurizio Signorini), who appears as a background figure, or perhaps psychological support, throughout the opera.

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About Opera Now

Baritone Thomas Hampson discusses his influential role as ambassador for opera and the art of singing; composer John Adams on turning 70 and his new opera about the California Gold Rush; Grange Park Opera gets ready for its relaunch at Britain's newest opera house; and the indomitable prowess of the great American soprano Leontyne Price. Plus, introducing a new opera inspired by Pink Floyd's The Wall; movement and pictures in the stagings of Japanese-born director Anna Etsuko Tsuri; the revelations of Dame Felicity Lott; American opera in the age of Trump; a weekend in Boston; and our pick of the best new works coming up stateside.