Verdi’s Macbeth boasts instantly appealing music and a familiar story taken from Shakespeare’s play.
Verdi’s Macbeth is always a popular opera, with instantly appealing music and a familiar story taken from Shakespeare’s play. The treacherous and scheming couple at its centre make for wonderful operatic villains; the type of strongly drawn characters that Verdi portrays in his music so well.
With Simon Keenlyside making his Royal Opera debut in the role of Macbeth, and with Antonio Pappano, Music Director of the Royal Opera, conducting the opera, this is a revival with an extra thrill.
Macbeth’s ‘dagger’ soliloquy and Lady Macbeth’s sleepwalking scene are just two of the play’s famous moments that inspired Verdi to wonderfully inventive and atmospheric music. The heroic Macduff, a chorus of witches and the vivid apparition of the eight kings complete an opera that has the composer at his most theatrical.
Phyllida Lloyd’s production, last presented by the Royal Opera in 2006, uses Verdi’s 1865 revision, especially noted for Lady Macbeth’s great aria ‘La luce langue’.
Macbeth is sung in Italian with English surtitles.