Out & About: Opera Roanoke's “Pagliacci”

Sep 18, 2019 391

BY: Mike Allen

Friday September 20, 7:30 p.m. and Sunday September 22, 2:30 p.m. Shaftman Performance Hall, Jefferson Center, 541 Luck Ave. S.W., Roanoke VA. Before Pennywise, there was “Pagliacci.” OK, so Stephen King’s mega-selling horror book and movie franchise “It” and Italian composer Ruggero Leoncavallo’s 1892 operatic masterpiece don’t actually have much in common, other than the unnerving trait of associating malevolent clowns with murder.

According to NPR music writer Ted Libbey, “Pagliacci” exemplifies the verismo style of opera, an 1890s Italian take on gritty realism that focuses on lower class struggles and crimes of passion. Leoncavallo reportedly based his story on a real crime involving an actor who murdered his unfaithful wife during a live stage performance.

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SOURCE: https://www.roanoke.com

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