Commedia lirica in three acts
Libretto by Arrigo Boito
based upon William Shakespeare’s
The Merry Wives of Windsor and Henry IV
Salieri, Balfe and Adam had already put music to the adventures of Sir John Falstaff before Arrigo Boito presented this very peculiar character to Verdi. The choice of an old womanising opportunist, full of wisdom turned to cunning, was undoubtedly a very good one for renewing the interest of the old composer. The Merry Wives of Windsor and Henry IV provide the plot for this third foray by Giuseppe Verdi into the work of Shakespeare: a crepuscular comedy that breathes new life into Verdi’s methods of composition. The whole world is a joke, after so much tragedy: that’s life, when it reaches its close.
Picture: Matthias Baus
|Musical direction||Stage direction||Scenery||Wardrobe||Lighting||Choreography|
|James Gaffigan||Mario Martone||Margherita Palli||Ursula Patzak||Pasquale Mari||Raffaella Giordano|
|Ambrogio Maestri||Mattia Olivieri||Juan Francisco Gatell||Jorge Rodríguez Norton||Joel Williams++||Valeriano Lanchas||Ainhoa Arteta||Sara Blanch||Violeta Urmana||Amber Fasquelle++|
|Sir John Falstaff||Ford||Fenton||Dr. Cajus||Bardolfo||Pistola||Mrs. Alice Ford||Nannetta||Mrs. Quickly||Mrs. Meg Page|
Orquestra de la Comunitat Valenciana
++Centre de PerfeccionamentA Staatsoper Berlin production
Falstaff, a fat and grotesque character, is planning to get money from two rich neighbours, Alice Ford and Meg Page, by sending each of them a love letter. The two wives discover they have received the same letter, and decide to play along and punish him, with the connivance of Mistress Quickly and Nannetta, Alice’s daughter. Informed of Falstaff’s intentions from the latter’s servants, Ford also wants revenge. In this he seeks the aid of the young Fenton, who is in love with his daughter Nannetta. The meeting between Alice and Falstaff turns out to be a disaster, but allows Ford to see that his wife is faithful. Now the men and women join together to ridicule Falstaff. After a series of amusing misunderstandings, Fenton and Nannetta end up married and Falstaff recognises he has learned his lesson.