What to know about the opening night of Rigoletto by Opera Australia this July

Verdi’s Rigoletto hasn’t been performed in Australia for a couple of years now, but since then, you’d be hard done by to find anyone who’s not been counting down until they’re able to hear some of the world’s most famous arias belted out in front of a packed Joan Sutherland Theatre at the Sydney Opera House.

Opera Australia is returning the production with no holds barred this July, directed by Elijah Moshinsky with Renato Palumbo behind the baton, the production is set to be one of the many gems in this winter season’s crown.

MORE: You should also see Lucia di Lamermoor this season

Showcasing the wonderful Dalibor Jenis as the protagonist Rigoletto, alongside Gianluca Terranova as the Duke of Mantua and Irina Lungu as Gilda, the production’s vocal prowess is glaringly obvious, which when coupled with the fabulous set-work of the ever-wowing department led by designer Michael Yeargan, will put the hapless tale of secrets and seduction right into the memory banks.

Complete with the renowned La donna e mobile, it’s a production for the ages.

What is Rigoletto about?

The Duke of Mantua lives only for pleasure of the female kind. No man’s wife or daughter is out of his reach, and while the Duke seduces their women, Rigoletto mocks their misfortune.

The men of the court want vengeance, and when they hear Rigoletto has a beautiful woman hidden away, they plot to abduct her.

The woman is Rigoletto’s daughter, who despite his best efforts to keep her hidden, has already caught the eye of the lustful Duke. He pays a visit to seduce the beautiful Gilda. Before he can complete his mission, Gilda is kidnapped by the mob of men, who take her to the Duke’s palace for his amusement. The distraught Rigoletto vows to take vengeance.

Opera Rigoletto clown

But Gilda loves the Duke, in spite of everything, and is prepared to go to any lengths to save him from her father’s wrath.

Love and vengeance meet in the darkness as the opera draws to its dramatic, devastating conclusion.

Have to see it? Rigoletto by Opera Australia is on at the Sydney Opera House until 24 August.

See some of the stage magic in store here…

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