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The Monte-Carlo Opera is playing host to Verdi's work from 25 January to 3 February
Censorship, both official and moral, was a constant companion in the life of Giuseppe Verdi. In general, censorship was directed at the political topics that this composer from Busseto ADDRESSed – the assassination of a king on stage (Un Ballo in Maschera), the reprehensible conduct of another monarch (François I, who became the Duke of Mantua in Rigoletto) and the numerous veiled calls to revolt against Austria found in his youthful works.
But it was never so intimate as for La Traviata ("The Fallen Woman") – at the time, Verdi was sharing his life with Giuseppina Strepponi, who starred in the role of Abigaille in Nabucco, an unmarried young mother with an eventful past, and had to face humiliation and rejection by a right-thinking bourgeoisie. It is difficult not to link this story with the Parisian courtesan who renounced love so as not to harm the reputation of her "in-laws." Struck down by tuberculosis, she dies in utter destitution, providing the pathos expected in 19th century melodrama.
La Traviata is universally recognised as one of the major operatic works, and, above all, the loveliest musical portrayal of the basic theme of Romanticism: sacrifice for love.
Since 22 January 1881, the Monte-Carlo Opera has played host to no less than thirty-three performers in the title role – from Adelina Patti, Marcella Sembrich, Nellie Melba, Claudia Muzio, Renata Tebaldi, Anna Moffo, Virginia Zeani to Angela Gheorghiu (in a tour of Japan).
These performances of La Traviata will inaugurate the Monte-Carlo Opera's tribute to Giuseppe Verdi on the occasion of the bicentenary of his birth - a tribute that will continue until April 2013, when there will be in-house performance of Stiffelio.
Friday 25 January 2013 (gala) – 8 pm
Saturday 26 January 2013 – 8 pm
Sunday 27 January 2013 – 3 pm
Wednesday 30 January 2013 – 8 pm*
Thursday 31 January 2013 – 8 pm
Friday 1 February 2013 – 8 pm* (young audience evening)
Saturday 2 February 2013 – 8 pm
Sunday 3 February 2013 – 3 pm*
Opera in three acts:
Music by Giuseppe Verdi (1813-1901)
La Traviata by Giuseppe Verdi
Further information: www.opera.mc
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