The second work of Verdi’s trilogy programmed for the 2016-17 season is Il trovatore, which is going to be on stage from February 28 to March 10, 2017. This is a joint production with Amsterdam’s De Nationale Opera and the Opéra National de Paris conducted by Jader Bignamini and directed by Àlex Ollé of the Fura Dels Baus. Both artists are already very popular with the audience of the Costanzi Theatre: Jader Bignamini is well remembered for his musical direction of Sofia Coppola’s Traviata with the costumes by Valentino and Àlex Ollé made a great impression for his touching version of Madama Butterfly at Caracalla.
After Rigoletto, Verdi’s only wish was to try something new. He grew very impatient, and even irritated, with his librettist Salvatore Cammarano for the little enthusiasm that the latter showed to the project for the adaptation of El Trovador, a chivalric drama by the Spanish writer Antonio García Gutiérrez.
Cammarano left the libretto unfinished probably because the plot was too complicated, his health conditions were also rather precarious. However the poet didn’t go along with Verdi’s requests. And in here lies the paradox of the Il trovatore. To most of the critics this work was the epitomisation of melodrama, however the formal constraints imposed by Cammarano had weakened Verdi’s intensity.
The music outlines figures consumed by passion which are almost abstract and not real characters, with the exception of Azucena, the gypsy who knows the secret that will destroy all. Although the character of Leonora was conceived by Verdi as a secondary role, in the final work she reaches the status of the sacrificial heroine.