There’s no role in opera more powerfully dramatic than the court jester Rigoletto, whose acid tongue and all-consuming desire for revenge lead to catastrophe for himself and his sweet, love-struck daughter Gilda. Rigoletto is one of Verdi’s greatest characterizations—a complex and tragic figure, pitiful and ferocious, with stupendous music to match.
- Action-packed plot and memorably complex characters | Dishonor and humiliation, a deadly curse, disguises, a kidnapping, revenge, a hired assassin, mistaken identities, a wrongful death, and more.
- A widowed father fiercely protects his teenage daughter | Yet, she has a secret boyfriend – his boss in disguise.
- Hear great melodies you’ll recognize instantly — as they were meant to be heard vs. in a commercial| No Verdi opera boasts more unforgettable tunes than this one. You’ll thrill to the licentious Duke of Mantua’s jaunty “La donna è mobile” and “Questa o quella,” and Gilda’s stunning “Caro nome, ” not to mention the most celebrated quartet in all opera, “Bella figlia dell’amore.”
- Two internationally acclaimed Ryan Opera Center alumni face off with passionate acting and powerful singing | Baritone Quinn Kelsey is the bitter jester Rigoletto (a triumph for him earlier this summer) and tenor Matthew Polenzani is his callous, rakish master, the Duke Mantua.
- Lyric debut artists round out the all-star cast| Rosa Feola (Gilda), Alexander Tsymbalyuk (Sparafucile), and Zanda Švēde (Maddalena).
- Just 8 Performances | Sat 10/7 through Fri 11/3 at Lyric Opera House, 20 N. Wacker Drive.
- About 2 hours 30 minutes, including intermission | Enjoy the ambience of the beautiful Art-Deco theater and foyer of the Lyric Opera House.
- New-to-Chicago Production| directed at Lyric by E. Loren Meeker.
- If you’re intrigued by the mysterious paintings of Giorgio de Chirico | Rigoletto’s set designs by Michael Yeargan are inspired by that 20th-century Italian artist, with elaborate traditional costumes designed by Constance Hoffman and lighting designed by Chris Maravich.
- If you love the stories of Les Misérables and The Hunchback of Notre Dame | French author Victor Hugo also wrote Le roi s’amuse, which inspired Rigoletto.
- Sung in Italian | With projected English translations.
- 30 members of the Lyric Opera Chorus | Prepared by Michael Black, chorus master.
- 65 members of the Lyric Opera Orchestra in the pit + 16 banda musicians offstage | Conducted by Marco Armiliato.
The opening-night performance of Rigoletto can be heard live locally on 98.7WFMT and globally on wfmt.com, beginning at 7:15pm on Saturday, October 7. For more information and to order tickets, visit www.lyricopera.org/Rigoletto or call 312-827-5600.