Tosca, Opera by G. Puccini
Opera in three acts
Music: Giacomo Puccini
Libretto: Giuseppe Giacosa and Luigi Illica, based on the play La Tosca by the French playwright Vitorien Sardou.
Premier in Paris in 1887.
Together with Madama Butterfly and La Boheme, Tosca, the fifth of twelve operas is one of Puccini’s most famous works. It is undoubtedly one of the Italian composer’s most melodramatic and realistic operas, probably also because of the violence and realism in the text. Puccini captivates listeners with his impressionist and typically French style, and the love of detail he shows in his compositions. Tosca premiered at the Teatro Costanzi in Rome on 14 January 1900 and was an instant success. After the aria in the third act, E lucevan le stele, and also on several other occasions during the evening, Puccini had to take the stage in order to accept tumultuous applause. Despite being warmly received by audiences, Tosca did not meet with the approval of the critics who saw too much cruelty and violence in the work. Nevertheless, Tosca’s popularity spread quickly and within a short time the opera had taken theatres throughout the world by storm and been translated into countless languages.
Musically, the work follows Puccini’s previous style: Continuity in the musical language which is barely interrupted by one or two arias. Dramatically, the second act is of incomparable intensity. With Tosca, Puccini presents a work that is much darker and more harrowing than his previous works. It is a breathtaking drama with an almost unsurpassable tension. The story of Tosca is of a political nature, and is set in Rom in less than twenty-four hours of June 1800, during the Napoleon's invasion of Italy (the battle of Marengo).
Conductor: Philippe Auguin (16, 19, 23 November 2012); Stefan Soltesz (25, 27 February 2013); Marco Armiliato (18 May 2013); Dan Ettinger (6, 9, 12 June 2013)
Staging: Margarethe Wallmann
Stage design and costumes: Nicola Benois
Main characters and roles:
- Floria Tosca, a celebrated singer (soprano): Emily Magee (16, 19, 23 November 2012); María José Siri (25, 27 February 2013); Norma Fantini (18 May 2013); Martina Serafin (6, 9, 12 June 2013)
- Mario Cavaradossi, a painter (tenor): Neil Shicoff (16, 19, 23 November 2012); Aleksandrs Antonenko (25, 27 February 2012); Marcello Giordani (18 May 2013); Roberto Alagna (6, 9, 12 June 2013)
- Baron Scarpia, chief of police (baritone): Falk Struckmann (16, 19, 23 November 2012); Claudio Sgura (25, 27 February); Juha Uusitalo (18 Mai 2013); Albert Dohmen (6, 9, 12 June 2013)
- Cesare Angelotti, former Consul of the Roman Republic (Bass)
- A Sacristan (Baritone)
- Spoletta, a police agent (tenor)
- Sciarrone, a gendarme(Bass)