One of the most feared critics in Italian opera is padding around her bedroom in a Milan retirement home, apologising for accepting visitors in stockinged feet. Luisa Mandelli, 95, moves nimbly, speaks fast and has crystal-clear memories of her days as a soprano, singing alongside Maria Callas in Giuseppe Verdi’s La traviata at La Scala in 1955. “I...

For Opera Colorado music director Ari Pelto, Giuseppe Verdi's final opera — written when the composer was 79 years old — is more than a comic epilogue to a long career filled with tragic music dramas. "When I ask performers about their favorite Verdi opera, pretty much everybody responds that it is 'Falstaff.' But most donors, board members and cas...

Luisa Miller did not attend “Luisa Miller” at the Metropolitan Opera on Wednesday night, but Falstaff and Un Giorno di Regno did. That is not absurdist nonsense. It is a matter of quotation marks. Keep your eye on them. Luisa Miller, without quotation marks, is a man in his early 60s who works as a nurse in an Italian prison and could not take the...

April 2 (Monday) 6:30 pm. Casa Italiana Zerilli-Marimò - New York University - 24 West 12th Street, Manhattan. Lecture: Of Cold Hands, Blind Eyes, and White Hair: Physical and Psychological Aging in the Operas of Giuseppe Verdi.  Francesco Izzo, University of Southampton, co-director of the American Institute for Verdi Studies at NYU, explores the...

Riccardo Muti thinks about how an afterlife meeting with Giuseppe Verdi would go after spending decades fighting to perform the works of Italy’s greatest composer exactly as written. “My questions to Verdi would be if I did right,” the 76-year-old conductor said. “And if he says that I was wrong, then I will die for a second time.” During a career...

February 11. 5:00 pm. Cost: Free. Dorothea’s House - 120 John Street, Princeton, NJ, 08542. http://www.dorotheashouse.org/events.html Film-maker August Ventura will share some extraordinary findings that have surfaced during research for his film project on Parma’s unique brand of Verdi-mania, including abundant rehearsal and performance footage, s...

The Metropolitan Opera in New York is currently hosting the theatrical production of the opera in four acts "Il trovatore" by Giuseppe Verdi. The production is directed for the stage by the Scottish opera and theatre director Sir David McVicar and conducted by Marco Armiliato. The libretto for this historical performance was written by the prolific...

Is there a composer who is more adored than Giuseppe Verdi? There are composers who command more respect than Verdi, but no one receives more love. To honor the recent anniversary of Verdi’s passing let’s reminisce about some of his most famous moments. First of all I should clarify that Verdi wasn’t born in Italy. He was born (October 10, 1913) in...

Opera in the Heights (Oh!) is ready to present a new look at Verdi's tale of regicide, "Un Ballo in Maschera (A Masked Ball)," from Feb. 16 to 24 at Lambert Hall. Based on a true story of the assassination of King Gustav III of Sweden at a masked ball during the 18th century, Verdi's Un Ballo in Maschera is a tale of forbidden love, a dark prophecy...

After a 10-year hiatus, one of the greatest operas in the repertoire returns to the stage of the Valentine Theatre next weekend as the Toledo Opera Association brings Giuseppe Verdi’s masterwork Rigoletto to life. Considered by many to be Verdi’s finest work, Rigoletto is a story of lust, betrayal, and la maledizione — “the curse.”  The opera, firs...