Only one lyric tenor on the scene today has the honeyed tone and ingratiating style to make comparisons to Pavarotti and Gigli seems serious, and it is Calleja, the man from Malta, who... is now maturing into an artist of the first rank." - New Yorker
Munich Opera Festival
- Rigotetto, Munich, Germany
- July 26, 28 2020
The premiere of Verdi's legendary “trilogia popolare” at Venice's Teatro La Fenice was preceded by a meticulous struggle with censorship. After all, Victor Hugo's proposal about the cynical hedonism of an aristocrat had been a hot topic across Europe since 1832, when the Paris premiere was promptly followed by the ban. Verdi was less interested in the criticism of rule than in the tragedy of the court jester who was overwhelmed with his existence. The deformed entertainer of a men's world consuming women pulls out all the stops of sarcasm and yet believes that he will remain unscathed from his public acts if he only neatly separates it from his private happiness. But when his daughter, who is kept in protective custody far from life, follows her own longing, she becomes the victim of his double existence. A lonely, pitiful clown?