Revivals

FALSTAFF
Giuseppe Verdi
1813 - 1901

Commedia lirica in three acts
Libretto by Arrigo Boito after William Shakespeare’s The Merry Wives of Windsor (1597) and Henry IV (1597)
World premiere: February 9th 1893, La Scala Milan

Sung in Italian with German surtitles
Duration: 2 3/4 hours with one interval

About the piece

Identical love letters written to two wealthy women, plans of revenge, a dirty linen basket, wood elves, spirits and two young lov ...
Identical love letters written to two wealthy women, plans of revenge, a dirty linen basket, wood elves, spirits and two young lovers are the ingredients in Verdi and Boito's successful comedy based on Shakespeare's comedy The Merry Wives of Windsor. Pleasure loving Sir John Falstaff maintains that honour is only a concept, and one that by no means justifies the loss of a limb. The ensembles in Verdi’s commedia lirica are masterpieces. The score turns the orchestra into a commentator and illustrator - it's eye winking onomato-poetry plays witness to the sparkling wit of the creative soul behind it all. This extremely successful production was directed by Shakespeare expert Keith Warner. He who laughs last, laughs longest, as Falstaff shows us in the most famous fugue in operatic history - "everything in the world is a joke!".

Synopsis

Falstaff and his henchmen Bardolfo and Pistola live at other people's expense in the »Garter's Inn«. Dr Cajus blames Bardolfo and ...
Falstaff and his henchmen Bardolfo and Pistola live at other people's expense in the »Garter's Inn«. Dr Cajus blames Bardolfo and Pistola for getting him drunk and robbing him. Falstaff, hard up. plans to seduce Alice Ford and Meg Page and get his hands on their rich husbands' money. Alice and Meg receive identical love letters from him. They intend to turn the tables with help from Nannetta, Alice's daughter and Mistress Quickly. Bardolfo and Pistola, finding Falstaff's duplicity dishonourable, tell Ford about Falstaff's plot. Quickly gives Falstaff Alice's invitation to call on her that afternoon. Signor Fontana (Ford) arrivies, claiming to be in love with Alice and asking Falstaff to seduce her. If her virtue is conquered once then.... Ford flies into a jealous rage when Falstaff tells him that he already has a date with Alice. Falstaff's wooing of Alice is interrupted by Quickly announcing the arrival of Meg who warns that Ford is hurrying home. The joke falls flat: Ford really does appear hunting for his rival, who hides in the dirty linen... Quickly talks Falstaff into a second meeting with Alice – at midnight, with him disguised as the „Black Huntsman“. Alice prepares the forthcoming masquerade. Nannetta, the Fairy Queen, leads the spirits who mock and torment Falstaff, who repents before seeing through the masquerade. Ford is about to marry Cajus to the veiled Queen of the Fairies when Alice asks him to marry another couple as well. Cajus kisses his bride - Bardolfo in disguise - and Ford has to give his blessing to his daughter and Fenton.


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Performances

Friday 19.09.2014

Further performances:
27.09.2014  | 03.10.2014  |
05.10.2014  | 10.10.2014  |
18.10.2014  | 24.10.2014

Cast

Conductor
Jonathan Darlington
Director
Keith Warner
Revival rehearsed by
Dorothea Kirschbaum
Stage Designer
Boris Kudlička
Costume Designer
Kaspar Glarner
Lighting Designer
Davy Cunningham
Dramaturge
Norbert Abels
Chorus Master
Markus Ehmann

Sir John Falstaff
Jonathan Lemalu
Ford
Daniel Schmutzhard / Artur Rucinski
Fenton
Martin Mitterrutzner / Simon Bode
Nannetta
Sofia Fomina
Alice Ford
Sara Jakubiak
Meg Page
Jenny Carlstedt / Claudia Mahnke / Maria Pantiukhova *
Mistress Quickley
Meredith Arwady
Dr. Cajus
Hans-Jürgen Lazar
Bardolfo
Beau Gibson
Pistola
Alfred Reiter / Andreas Bauer

Oper Frankfurt's Orchestra and Chorus


* Member of the Opera Studio

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