Singing Macduff in Macbeth (Verdi): February 14, 16m, 22, 23m
This is West Bay Opera's third production ever of Verdi's Macbeth. The libretto follows the Shakespeare play closely. Though Verdi turned the three witches into an entire women's chorus, he still felt that the witches, as a whole are dramatically on a par with Macbeth and Lady Macbeth. A major success upon its premiere in 1847, the opera was revised and translated into French in 1865 for Paris. Paradoxically, it is the revised version, sung in Italian, that has become more widely performed. Verdi was particularly proud of this score, his first opportunity to explore Shakespeare's work, which he greatly admired. After Nabucco's Abigaile, Lady Macbeth is the next big soprano role in the Verdian canon, an intrepid musical exploration of the Shakespearean archetype, a woman whose all-consuming ambition ends in tragedy and madness. Macbeth is a remarkable score, and in addition to the beautiful arias, it includes outstanding ensembles and lots of exciting choral and orchestral music.