Verdi’s Rigoletto to play Sydney Opera House this winter

Members-of-the-Opera-Australia-Chorus-in-Opera-Australia's-2019-production-of-Rigoletto-photo-by-Jeff-BusbyMembers of the Opera Australia Chorus in Opera Australia's 2019 production of Rigoletto photo by Jeff BusbyOpera Australia will present one of the world’s most loved operas, Verdi’s Rigoletto, in the Joan Sutherland Theatre this June.

Considered by Verdi himself as his best opera, Rigoletto remains an audience favourite with its catchy tunes, thrilling pace and dramatic characters, exploring themes that are just as relevant today as when it opened in 1851. The gripping plot of love and revenge explores the concepts of wealth and power, questioning the complicity of a mob society in enabling corruption.

Verdi proclaimed he would never write better than this sensational score, including the simple, short La donna è mobile which became an instant hit at the opera’s premiere and Bella figlia dell’ amore, considered to be among the finest opera ensemble writing. These widely recognised tunes have infiltrated pop culture from pasta advertisements to feature films.

Leading the lively action onstage, rising star Italian baritone Ernesto Petti will make both his Australian and role debuts as the vengeful Rigoletto. Beloved Australian soprano Stacey Alleaume will sing Gilda, which she has performed to high acclaim at Austria’s Bregenz Festival.

Sought after Brazilian tenor Atalla Ayan will reprise his role as the Duke of Mantua and the ruthless Sparafucile will be portrayed by one of the world’s most prominent basses, Roberto Scandiuzzi, who will also perform in Aida this winter.

Locals, bass David Parkin will make his role debut as Monterone while mezzo soprano Sian Sharp will be busy playing both Maddalena and Giovanna. The principal cast will be completed by a stellar ensemble of Opera Australia singers, including Luke Gabbedy, Virgilio Marino, Anthony Mackey, Ruth Strutt, Jennifer Bonner and Nathan Lay, alongside the Opera Australia Chorus.

Renowned Italian maestro Renato Palumbo will lead the Opera Australia Orchestra, having expertly conducted the 2018 production wherein he “demonstrated his impeccable credentials as a Verdi interpreter” – The Australian.

Inspired by Fellini’s La Dolce Vita, Elijah Moshinsky’s glamorous production presents traditional staging expected of grand opera complete with a revolving two-storey doll house set, lavish 1950s-inspired costumes, and a scene-stealing Fiat 500. With Verdi’s sensational score, magnificent sets, and exciting performances, Rigoletto is one of Opera Australia’s most popular and enduring productions.

Conductor: Renato Palumbo | Director: Elijah Moshinsky | Revival Director: Shane Placentino | Featuring: Ernesto Petti, Atalla Ayan, Stacey Alleaume, David Parkin, Roberto Scandiuzzi, Luke Gabbedy, Virgilio Marino, Anthony Mackey, Sian Sharp, Ruth Strutt, Jennifer Bonner, Nathan Lay, Opera Australia Chorus, Opera Australia Orchestra | Set & Costume Designer: Michael Yeargan | Lighting Designer: Robert Bryan | Assistant Director: Warwick Doddrell

Joan Sutherland Theatre – Sydney Opera House, Bennelong Point, Sydney
Season: 13 – 26 June 2023
Information and Bookings:

Image: Members of the Opera Australia Chorus in Opera Australia’s 2019 production of Rigoletto – photo by Jeff Busby