Bregenz Festival

RIGOLETTO from Giuseppe Verdi

Opera in three acts (1851)
Libretto by Francesco Maria Piave
adapted from Victor Hugo's Le Roi s'amuse (1832)
Sung in Italian with German surtitles

The court jester Rigoletto jokes about the licentious ways of his master the duke, whom he actively supports in his various conquests. His laughter incenses Monterone, whose daughter has been dishonoured by the duke, and it sticks in his throat when Monterone curses him. Without realising it, Rigoletto becomes an accomplice in the kidnapping of his own daughter Gilda, whom he protectively keeps confined to the house. She sees the duke's advances  as a chance to escape from her father's custody. Rigoletto engages a murderer to put an end once and for all to the duke's egotistical philandering. But when Rigoletto is about to throw the shrouded body into the water, he hears the duke singing his cynical credo "La donna è mobile" and fears for his daughter's life …

Giuseppe Verdi's masterpiece – compelling, blood-curdling and beautiful – is being performed for the first time on the Bregenz lake stage.

The stage director and designer Philipp Stölzl will highlight the striking contrasts between spectacle and intimate chamber drama in his production of Verdi's opera. Alongside the circus-like palace festivities, the daring abduction and the terrifying storm at night there are moving scenes between father and daughter, and between Gilda and the duke.

Performances take place in the period 17 July to 18 August 2019