Rated NR · 180 min. · 2013

Concert, Musical, Program

Jonathan Kent's production for The Royal

Opera captures the dangerous political

turbulence of Rome in 1800. The Chief of

Police, Scarpia - one of the most malevolent

villains in opera - ruthlessly pursues and

tortures enemies of the state. His dark,

demonic music contrasts with the expansive

melodies of the idealistic lovers, Tosca and

Cavaradossi, who express their passion in

sublime arias, including 'Vissi d'arte' and 'E

lucevan le stelle'. Giacomo Puccini's dramatic

work was a hit with audiences on its 1900

premiere and it remains one of the most

performed of all operas - with its gripping

plot and glorious music, it's easy to see why.

A candle-lit church, Scarpia's gloomy

study with its hidden torture chamber and

the false optimism of a Roman dawn: this

handsome production throws into relief the

ruthlessly taut drama, as the tension is wound

up towards a fateful conclusion. Puccini's

meticulously researched score is infused

with the same authentic detail, from distant

cannon fire during the Act I Te Deum to

tolling church bells and the sounds of a firing

squad.

Director: Jonathan Kent

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