One of Verdi's key works, mirroring his political engagement and also offering one of the finest baritone parts in the repertoire
P. Steinberg - DR
Sung in Italian with French subtitles
Simon Boccanegra was a long and difficult work to write. An initial version was first performed at La Fenice in Venice in 1857, where it met with a mixed reception. Verdi reworked it 25 years later, this time with the help of his partner Arrigo Boito, who made the plot tighter and more streamlined. This second version was first performed at La Scala in 1881 and is the version that survived. A sweeping panorama built on political issues and sentimental dramas, Simon Boccanegra is a real Verdi masterpiece, in which the entire range of emotions can be deployed with a seldom-seen intensity, where the dramatic episodes are genuine theatre sequences, and where the orchestra offers intensely poetic pieces. However the opera's main strong point is its fine title role, given this time to the baritone part, not the tenor. And who better today than Ludovic Tézier to take on such a role? His musicality and his dramatic engagement make this refined musician and distinguished performer the most accomplished baritone of his generation.