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Falstaff (concert version)
Sat, 31. Oct 2020, 19:30

Giuseppe Verdi (1813 – 1901)

Just as Shakespeare's comedies never get bogged down in tattiness but always explore the sadness and loneliness behind the mask of tomfoolery, so too is Verdi's late work, FALSTAFF, much more than a light-hearted run-around. Basing his FALSTAFF on the Bard's “Merry Wives of Windsor” and “Henry IV”, Verdi created one of the quirkiest scores of the 19th century, one that takes the theatre itself as the central theme of the piece.

Society repeatedly equates a Falstaff encounter with an open season for lies and masquerades. The story presents us with a pretend rendezvous, a husband disguised as a spy and a collective ghost staged in a park at night. Falstaff is the individualistic outsider stirring up the comfortable status quo with his otherness and inducing the bourgeoisie to act, to produce theatre, to be anarchical.

Verdi penned FALSTAFF around the time that he was setting up his “Casa Verdi” home for retired musicians in Milan. The opera is at once a testimony to the youthfulness and experience of a composer shortly before his 80th birthday. The work deals with the ageing process and touches on issues such as loneliness and depression. Ever present, however, is the spirit of the closing fugue: “Tutto nel mondo è burla. / Everything in the world is but a joke.”

Commedia lirica in three acts
Libretto by Arrigo Boito, based on William Shakespeare's „The Merry Wives of Windsor“
First performed on 9. February, 1893 at Milan

recommended from the age of 13

Within our opera house it is mandatory to wear a mouth and nose cover. The obligation to wear a mouth-nose cover also applies to your seat, so that even if the minimum distance between seats is slightly reduced, the necessary protection against infection is maintained.

During the performances, there will again be interval catering - naturally within the rules of hygiene, distance and infection protection: You can enjoy your orders at restaurant tables and bar tables in the foyers. We recommend that you reserve your seats in advance of your visit. The catering team looks forward to your reservation at www.rdo-berlin.de or by telephone +49 (0)30 343 84 670, please pay in advance.