Antonio Pappano, Music Director of the Royal Opera, conducts a new production by Keith Warner of Verdi’s great setting of Shakespeare’s tragedy. This is a Verdi masterpiece and one of the central works of the opera repertory: striking choruses from the start, arresting ensembles and scenes of haunting intimacy. Drawing on the world of Shakespeare’s day as well as illuminating the human emotions of every age, this new staging brings out the descent from love and light to jealousy and dark. Two casts portray the central triangle of the suspicious Moor Otello driven to murder (Jonas Kaufmann in his role debut and Gregory Kunde), his blameless wife Desdemona (Maria Agresta and Dorothea Roschmann), and the malevolent lago (Ludovic Tezier and Zeljko Kucici). Such famous arias as lago’s Credo and Desdemona’s Willow Song, and Otello’s descent from overwhelming rage in Act II to jealous despair in Act III make Otello one of the perfect pairings of music and drama.
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