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Story & Setting:

Based on Victor Hugo’s controversial play Le Roi s’Amuse, this tragic piece tells the tale of a disfigured court jester whose schemes go awry in the worst possible way. Bartlett Sher’s new production of Verdi’s timeless tragedy resets the opera’s action in 1920s Europe, with Art Deco sets by Michael Yeargan and elegant costumes by Catherine Zuber.

Opera Notes:

Composed in 1851, Rigoletto is considered the first opera of Verdi’s middle period, a time when he focused less on political allegory and larger-than-life heroes and heroines, and instead turned his eye to more intimate stories of deep human emotion. Through his music, the composer evokes a full spectrum of emotions, from the horror of a curse, to the sighing of first love, to the tempestuous storm that leads to the final scene. Many of the melodies in this piece are incredibly memorable; legend tells it that Verdi kept the tenor aria “La donna è mobile” secret until the opera’s premiere, knowing that it would instantly be a hit.

Sung in



3 hours & 15 minutes

Giuseppe Verdi (1813-1901)


"Cortigiani, vil razza dannata" (George Gagnidze)

Met Opera (current production)

“Caro nome” (Nadine Sierra)

Met Opera (current production)

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