Opera Scotland

Rigoletto 1969Teatro Comunale, Florence

Read more about the opera Rigoletto

The Festival opera programme

This three-week visit to the 1969 Festival by the opera company from Florence brought a repertoire of largely unfamiliar work, with the popular Verdi and Puccini presented with good casts that justified their inclusion. Two full-length operas were brought, Donizetti's Maria Stuarda as well as Rigoletto. There were two double bills. Gianni Schicchi was paired with a rare Rossini piece, Il signor Bruschino. There were also two little known twentieth century operas, with composers still alive. These were by Malipiero (Sette Canzoni) and Dallapiccola (Il prigioniero).

Scottish Opera's contribution was on the Fringe - a late night double bill at the Gateway. This consisted of Robin Orr's Full Circle and the premiere of a comedy by John Purser, The Undertaker. The Music Theatre Ensemble provided  late night showings including Monteverdi (Il combattimento di Tancredi e Clorinda) and Stravinsky (Renard). The Usher Hall programme included Giulini conducting the Verdi Messa da Requiem.

 

Rigoletto

These Edinburgh Festival performances are full of familiar great names, some nearing the end of long careers. Renata Scotto was at her highly impressive peak, and her interpretation of Gilda was reckoned to be rather special, surrounded by a thoroughly well-prepared staging with a generally strong cast. However there was one weakness - Renato Cioni's Duke was vocally unreliable. His voice had been strained by singing heavier roles and the sound was often unpleasant.

The designs were clever, given the restrictions of the King's stage - for the opening court scene the main action was concentrated in an ante-room with the dancing just visible through doorways to the rear.

 

Teatro Comunale, Florence at the Edinburgh Festival - 1969

The Florence company brought four programmes - two full-length operas and two double bills of shorter works. The repertoire provided a useful survey of Italian opera from Rossini's time to the recent past, with two of the composers still living.

The six operas were by  Rossini (Il signor Bruschino);  Donizetti (Maria Stuarda);  Verdi (Rigoletto);   Puccini (Gianni Schicchi);   Malipiero (Sette Canzoni);  Dallapiccola (Il prigioniero).

The performance schedule was:

First week, comm 25 Aug:  Mon 25 Maria Stuarda;  Tue 26 Rigoletto;  Wed 27 np;  Thu 28 Maria Stuarda;  Fri 29 Sette Canzoni & Il prigioniero;  Sat 30 Rigoletto.

Second week, comm 1 Sep:  Mon 1 Maria Stuarda;  Tue 2 np;  Wed 3 Rigoletto;  Thu 4 Il signor Bruschino & Gianni Schicchi;  Fri 5 Sette Canzoni Il prigioniero;  Sat 6 Il signor Bruschino & Gianni Schicchi.

Third week, comm 8 Sep:  Mon 8 Maria Stuarda;  Tue 9 Rigoletto;  Wed 10 Il signor Bruschino & Gianni Schicchi;  Thu 11 np;  Fri 12 Il signor Bruschino & Gianni Schicchi;  Sat 13 Rigoletto.

Performance DatesRigoletto 1969

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King's Theatre, Edinburgh | Edinburgh

26 Aug, 19.30 30 Aug, 19.30 3 Sep, 19.30 9 Sep, 19.30 13 Sep, 19.30

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