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Umberto Giordano | If Opera @ Belcombe Court

Belcombe Court

Opera in 3 acts
Libretto by Arturo Colautti, based on the play by Victorien Sardou
First performed at Teatro Lirico, Milan, 17 November 1898

Director John Wilkie
Conductor Oliver Gooch
Designer Alisa Kalyanova
With the If Opera Ensemble and resident orchestra Bristol Ensemble

(sung in Italian with English surtitles)

A story of love, murder and betrayal

In the late, great Italian operatic repertoire, alongside the ‘super-operas’, you will find a number of pearls that have grown in the consciousness of audiences around the world. These are operas that carry all the ingredients for spectacular and powerful evenings at the theatre; strong characters, stories of intrigue, love and tragedy and of course, lyrical, gorgeous music. Fedora by Umberto Giordano is one such opera and whilst the composer is probably better known for Andrea Chenier, Fedora isn’t far off. In the opera’s premiere, the role of Loris Ipanov was created by Enrico Caruso and ever since a procession of the most exalted singers in history have assumed the opera’s principal roles in all the great houses of the world and on recordings. 

Fedora is an opera that encompasses love, murder, betrayal and tragedy, moving from Russia, to Paris and Switzerland. It is a world of royalty, aristocracy and privilege but none of this can protect its central characters from the vagaries of love and jealousy. When Princess Fedora seeks revenge on the man she believes murdered her betrothed, she sets in motion a train of tragic events that will ultimately cost her everything.

Fedora delivers beautiful sweeping melodies, febrile emotion and glorious orchestral colours.  It includes one of the most intensely passionate tenor arias in the canon (Amor ti vieta), a mesmerising intermezzo and possibly one of the cleverest dramatic scenes in the repertoire.

Audiences can bring their own chairs/blankets/tables and are free to picnic within the extensive grounds of Belcombe Court.

Listen to Plácido Domingo sing the famous aria Amor ti vieta on YouTube, or download to your device from Deezer or Spotify You might also like to listen to the beautiful intermezzo on Apple Music or YouTube. Angela Gheorghiou sings from Act 1 and Act 3’s Death scene and the heartbreaking final scene with Renato Scotto and Placido Domingo.


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