Upcoming shows

Opera in 3 acts
Beginning: 28.05.2022 - 14:00
Completion: 16:45
Sung in Italian
Guiseppe Verdi
Libretto by F. Piave based on Le roi’s amuse by V. Hugo.
Premiered on the stage of the Kyiv Opera on March 28, 1998.
Act 1
Scene 1
A ball at the palace of the Duke of Mantua. Laughter, music, dancing, the splendor of the courtiers and the smiles of beautiful women all mix up in the rampant chaos of impetuous merriment, which resembles an orgy. The overall center of attention is the Duke himself. Young and frivolously handsome, he is famous in Mantua for his love escapades. In a circle of friends, the Duke enthusiastically tells of an enchanting girl from the suburbs he recently met by chance near the church.
Next to the Duke - his favorite, a constant companion of all his frivolous pleasures, the quick-witted hunchback Rigoletto - the court jester. The misfortune of being ugly and hunchbacked hardened him. Personally serving the Duke, he secretly hates his master for his beauty, youth, and lack of soul, as well as the nobles for their conceit and wealth, all people - because they do not have a hump on their backs. His weapon - laughter, his only entertainment - intrigue, his goal - revenge. He continually plays the courtiers against themselves, inflames undignified feelings in the Duke, and pushes him to debauchery.
Seeing the proud Countess Ceprano, the Duke, with his usual fickleness, forgets about the girl he met at the church. In his heart flares a passion for the beauty, who he tries to seduce in front of her husband. The enraged Count Ceprano wants to intercept the Duke, but Rigoletto appears in his way. Mocking the jealous husband, he advises his master on the same night to take the magical Countess...
The hunchback's scheming overwhelms the patience of the courtiers. Having learned from Marullo that the jester hides a lover in a secluded house, they secretly decide to kidnap her for the Duke as revenge for themselves against the treacherous Rigoletto.
Suddenly, the fun of the ball is disturbed by the appearance of the Count of Monterone: the old man demands the return of his kidnapped daughter. The Duke is furious. Rigoletto, confident in his impunity, laughs at the father’s grief. Count Monterone curses the jester.
Scene 2
A deserted street on the outskirts of the city. With heavy foreboding and gripped by the thought of the curse of Monterone, Rigoletto hurries home.
Rigoletto’s reflections are interrupted by the assassin Sparafucile, who offers his services. The jester, rejecting the offer, remembers his name just in case. Finally he is home! Only here he feels happy and calm, able to love, dream and rejoice.
Having missed him, Gilda runs out to her father with a cheerful laugh. She is constantly alone here. Only sometimes does she go to the church without Giovanna. The carefree chirping of the girl subsides: her heart tells her that her father is upset about something ... In vain he tries to tell Gilda the reason for his sadness. Rigoletto hides his humiliating jester service from Gilda and reluctantly tells her about her late mother.
Light steps attract the attention of Rigoletto. The Duke, who hid on the other side of the wall, quietly penetrates the garden. Anxiety does not leave Rigoletto. But in the garden he saw no one, and, gently saying goodbye to his daughter, ordered the maidservant to take care of the girl.
Left alone, Gilda recalls the beautiful young man she recently met near the church. The girl's heart is overwhelmed with love and tenderness. Suddenly, the Duke appears ... But this is the stranger she was just thinking about! Calling himself a poor student, the Duke ardently tells the girl about his feelings... In parting, unable to hide her happiness, Gilda promises the young man that henceforth her heart will belong only to him.
At this time, the courtiers are assembling behind the wall, who decided to fulfill their insidious plans at night. But the sudden return of the alarmed Rigoletto almost foiled their plan. In order to dispel suspicion, they convince the jester that they came to kidnap Countess Ceprano for the Duke, whose palace is located nearby. Rigoletto agrees to take part in this venture, but wants his face to be hidden under a mask, just like the others. Fastening a mask on Rigoletto, one of the courtiers ties a shawl on top. Now the jester does not hear or see anything...
Having circled him around Gilda’s sanctuary several times, the conspirators instructed him to hold the ladder that they used to enter into his daughter’s home and kidnapped her. Suddenly, Rigoletto saw that he was holding a ladder against the wall of his own home... A terrible scream pierces the silence of the night - Gilda has disappeared…
Act 2
The morning of the next day. The Duke is sad: someone has stolen the beautiful stranger. To cheer him up, the courtiers tell him of the incident the past night. Happy that Rigoletto’s "lover" in his palace, the Duke hurries to his chambers.
Suddenly, the voice of Rigoletto is heard. With feigned carelessness, he sings a melancholy song. But it is not a mockery - the pain can be heard in it. Gazing intently at the spiteful faces, the jester, shaken with grief, tries in vain to find Gilda's tracks. And only when the courtiers ambiguously hint that his lordship is “on the hunt,” Rigoletto immediately guesses everything. His curses are filled with rage and fearsome accusations; which changes to despair and passionate pleas for the return of his daughter.
The tragic scene is interrupted by Gilda, who ran out of the Duke’s chambers. A flash of hope illuminates the soul of Rigoletto: what if it was just an inappropriate joke? But the daughter, unfortunately, cannot console her poor father and with tears in her eyes tells him how she fell in love with the Duke, and how she got there, to the chambers. Rigoletto vows revenge. The scene ends with a duet in which the jester is eager for revenge, while his daughter prays for mercy, since she loves the Duke and is confident in his love.
Act 3
The deserted outskirts of the city. To the tavern with Sparafucile, Rigoletto brought his daughter to be convinced of the treason against the Duke, who had also come on a date with Maddalena, Sparafucile’s sister. Gilda is in despair...
Rigoletto sends his daughter home, and agrees with Sparafucile regarding the murder of the Duke. A thunderstorm is approaching. Sparafucile is satisfied: the guest will stay in his house all night long, and this will make things much easier...
Maddalena liked the handsome young man, and she pleads with her brother to save his life. Sparafucile is concerned: he is an honest killer and must keep his word. But if anyone by chance were to come into their house ... then he can kill the stranger instead of the guest.
Gilda returns in men's clothes to the place where the crime is to be committed. Overhearing the conversation of the brother and sister, she decides to sacrifice herself for the life of her beloved. It is approaching midnight when the murder is about to happen as agreed. The girl goes into the house...
The storm subsides. Sparafucile, receiving the money, brings the jester a bag with the body. The hunchback is in a hurry to the river to finish his revenge with his own hands. He triumphs that he got revenge... But what is this? Where from afar to him comes the familiar, frivolous song of the Duke...
With horror, Rigoletto opens the sack and upon a flash of lightning sees the dying Gilda... So, the curse came true: the curse of the father Monterone fell on the father Rigoletto.