Verdi - Un Ballo in Maschera (Georg Solti, Plácido Domingo, Leo Nucci) [2011/1990]
NTSC 4:3 (720x480) VBR | Italiano (LinearPCM, 2 ch) | 7.67 Gb (DVD9)
Classical | ArtHaus | Sub: English, Deutsch, Francais, Espanol, Italiano, Chinese | 145 min | +3% Recovery
A brief reminder, to begin with, of the chequered history of Un ballo in maschera. Antonio Somma wrote the libretto, based on a play by Eugène Scribe, entitled Gustave III (1833). This, in its turn, was based on some historical facts concerning the assassination of King Gustav III of Sweden in 1792. The background was a political conspiracy but Scribe embroidered proceedings with a love story between the king and Amelia. Censorship in Italy in the late 1850s would not accept the portrayal of a king being murdered on the opera stage and the story had to be reworked. This happened, not once but twice and it all ended up in the transportation of the action from Stockholm to Boston during colonial times. The king became the British governor. In that shape it was premiered in Rome on 17 February 1859 and was an immediate success. It rapidly spread to New York and London and has ever since been regarded as one of Verdi’s best operas. – Göran Forsling, MusicWeb International.