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©2019 Teatro la Fenice

Donizetti Roberto Devereux

From 26 June TO 04 July 2020
Teatro La Fenice - Venezia
Program

Donizetti : Roberto Devereux

Cast
  • Conductor
    Riccardo Frizza
  • Director
    Alfonso Antoniozzi
  • Performers
    Roberto Devereux: Enea Scala
    Elisabetta: Roberta Mantegna
    Sara, Duchessa di Nottingham: N.N.
    Duca di Nottingham: Alessandro Luongo
Details on the Performance

Roberto Devereux (or Roberto Devereux, ossia Il conte di Essex) is a tragedia lirica, or tragic opera, by Gaetano Donizetti. Salvadore Cammarano wrote the Italian libretto after François Ancelot’s tragedy Elisabeth d’Angleterre (1829), and based as well on the Historie secrete des amours d’Elisabeth et du comte d’Essex (1787) by Jacques Lescéne des Maisons, although Devereux was the subject of at least two other French plays: Le Comte d’Essex by Thomas Corneille and Le Comte d’Essex by Gauthier de Costes, seigneur de la Calprenède.
The opera is loosely based on the life of Robert Devereux, 2nd Earl of Essex, an influential member of the court of Queen Elizabeth I of England. The plot of Roberto Devereux was hardly original, mainly derived from Felice Romani’s libretto Il Conte d’Essex of 1833, originally set by Saverio Mercadante. Romani’s widow charged Cammarano with plagiarism, although the practice of stealing plots was very common between rival Italian opera houses.

Source © Teatro La Fenice

  • Venue Info
  • Seating Plan
  • Synopsis
  • Videos

Teatro La Fenice - Venezia Location Campo San Fantin, 1965 - 30124 Venezia Italie

  • Venue's Capacity: 1000

The Venue's History in few words …

A bar is available in the Theater offering few things to eat during the interval.

You may also visit the theater during the day, audioguides are available in english. During day time, the bar aslo serves complete lunch in the beautiful Salle Apolinee.

 

In the history of opéra, the city of Venice occupies an eminent position. In 1637, here in the doges city, the first public opéra theater was opened to paying members of the public. This was a turning point, breaking with the tradition of court performances, and the opéra house in Venice soon attracted a new audience, presenting works that blatantly alternated scènes ofhigh comedy and high tragedy, butfocusing more importantly on the "prima donna" and soon the "primo uomo". Le. the castrato. A number of theaters subsequently appeared in Venice and in the seventeenth century, the works ofHândel and Alessandro Scarlatti were public triumphs.

 

In 1787, "La Nobile Società", the owner of a theater that had recently been expropriated, decided to build a new hall designed to please both the eye and the ear. The élégant building, with two main entrances, one on the canal and the other on a piazza, underwent various changes over the years, particularly after the fire in 1836, but, like the Phoenix whose name it bears, it rose from the ashes.


On the night of 29 January 1996, for the second time in its history, fire devastated the theatre. The interior was completely destroyed and only the foundations survived. The theatre is totally reconstructed “the way it was, where it was” and re-open for a week of inauguration on 14 December 2003. The Return of the great La Fenice theatre is officaly in November 2004 with La Traviata, the opera by Verdi which premiered in this exact theatre.

 

Agreement is universal as to the future of the historié theater which is not only acclaimed as one of the most handsome in Italy, but also holds a long and brilliant record for premiering new works. From Rossini with TANCREDI in 1813 to Luigi Nono with INTOLLERANZA in 1960, ail the great Italian composers have seen their finest works presented here. Verdi premiered five of his opéras to Venetian audiences at La Fenice — ERNANI, ATTILA, RIGOLETTO, LA TRAVIATA and SIMON BOCCANEGRA, and ever since the Italian premières of RIENZI and the RING CYCLE by Wagner, La Fenice hasfeatured many international premières, including three major 20th century opéras: Stravinsky's RAKE'S PROGRESS (1951), Britten's TURN OF THE SCREW (1954) and Prokoflev's THE FIERY AN GEL (1955).

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Synopsis

Roberto Devereux

ROBERTO DEVEREUX, AN EMOTIONAL OPERA

The tragic work of Roberto Devereux by the Italian composer Gaetano Donizetti is rightly regarded as a classic. The opera, with a libretto from Salvadore Cammarano, is roughly based on the life of the titular second earl of Essex in the time of Queen Elisabeth I of England. Dealing with the formal codes of marriage and romance in the late middle ages, the opera reveals the strict rules of behaviour in the royal court. The opera has been performed widely around the world since its début at the Teatro San Carlo, Naples in 1837.

HISTORY

The story takes place in the royal court of Queen Elisabeth of England in 1598. The opera examines the love lives of three central figures of the Queen, the Duchess of Nottingham and her doomed paramour, Devereux. Building up an intense atmosphere of rivalry over three acts, the opera culminates in a performance of pure tragic romance.

Act 1

Sara, the Duchess of Nottingham cries alone in nervous dismay. The Queen enters and declares that she has agreed to see the treason accused Devereux once again. Lord Cecil approaches the Queen and asks her for a final judgement. Devereux soon enters, and the Queen expresses her love for him and gives him a ring. Sara overhears all of this to her shock and displeasure. In the following scene Sara sees the ring on Devereux's finger and, taking it to mean a symbol of love, states that they must never see each other again.

Act 2

The Lord Cecil confides in the Queen that the final sentence for Roberto
Devereux
will be death. The Queen learns that he had a scarf in his possession which she examines. Nottingham enters and begs for Devereux's life, until the Queen shows him the scarf. Recognising it as his wife's work, he declares that he will have vengeance. The Queen asks Devereux to name her love rival, but he refuses and his death warrant by axe is signed and sealed. Nottingham bitterly cries that an axe strike is not punishment enough.


Act 3

Sara receives a letter from Devereux along with his ring. He instructs her to deliver the ring to the Queen and beg forgiveness. Nottingham takes the letter and the ring from her. In his cell, Devereux wonders why the Queen has not received the ring. He is soon led away to his execution. In the final scene, Elisabeth is mournful over the death of her love. She demands to know why the ring was not delivered to her. Nottingham replies with the chilling words; "blood I wanted, and blood I got." Elizabeth is haunted by the headless corpse of Devereux and the affecting performance is drawn to a close.

THE MAIN ROLES

Elisabeth, Queen of England, soprano
The Duke of Nottingham, baritone
Sara, Duchess of Nottingham, mezzo-soprano
Roberto Devereux, Earl of Essex, tenor
Lord Cecil, nobleman, tenor
Sir Gualtiero Raleigh, nobleman, bass

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