Ópera de Tenerife presents Giuseppe Verdi’s Rigoletto, to be performed on the 19, 21 and 23 November at Auditorio de Tenerife’s Sala Sinfónica. The details of this production were revealed today, Wednesday the 13th by the Cabildo’s Director of Culture, Leopoldo Santos; Auditorio de Tenerife’s artistic director, José Luis Rivero; stage director Mario Pontiggia; musical director Giuseppe Finzi, and the singers Luis Cansino and Leonor Bonilla on behalf of the cast.

Leopoldo Santos pointed out that this Ópera de Tenerife’s production “is valid today”; he highlighted the work done by all the people involved in staging Rigoletto and said that “bringing together the Sinfónica de Tenerife and Ópera de Tenerife is always a pleasant cooperation”.  José Luis Rivero said that “the three performances will pay tribute to Alfredo Kraus, on the occasion of the twentieth anniversary of his decease”.

Mario Pontiggia, who is also artistic director at the Fundación Alfredo Kraus, stated that the president of the foundation was grateful for the homage paid to the Canarian tenor. “Kraus kept a great relationship with this island since the 1960s and one of his last activities was a recording with the Sinfónica de Tenerife in 1998”, the maestro explained. “Verdi managed to grasp Victor Hugo’s concept, which is about the relationship of a father with his daughter, who loved him out of compassion in a monstrous context”, concluded Pontiggia, who is the stage director of this Rigoletto.

For his part, Giuseppe Finzi, who is making his debut with the Orquesta Sinfónica de Tenerife, believes that this opera “is the most modern and interesting of Verdi’s trilogy, and it harshly criticizes power and vice”; “these are current issues for which Verdi created wonderful music, nearly expressionist”, the musical director added.

Luis Cansino disclosed that "I’ll offer my view on Rigoletto supported by Finzi’s view"; the part, in his opinion, “is one of the most wonderful roles for a baritone”. The singer also admitted that "I’m really happy to work again with someone who’s very dear to me, Mario Pontiggia.; he gave me my first opportunity to perform a first-rate role in this country”; and also being able to work with Leonor Bonilla, “who I worked with when she was a child and I’m thrilled with her successful career”.

Leonor Bonilla admitted that "gratitude is an understatement whenever I come to Tenerife". Regarding the phrase "chicharrera de adopción" [native of Santa Cruz by adoption] used by José Luis Rivero to refer to her at this press conference, the soprano explained that "it delights me because ever since I took part at the 2014Opera (e)Studio, coming here has always been a pleasure". Regarding her role as Gilda, she shared her personal satisfaction at having Luis Cansino as her father in fiction because she regards him as her father on the stage.

Rigoletto is a drama in three acts with music by Giuseppe Verdi and libretto in Italian by Francesco Maria Piave, based on the theatre play Le roi s’amuse (The King has Fun) by Victor Hugo. In this opera, Verdi portrays all the deep-rooted passions characteristic of man’s nature. Until it was premiered on 11 March 1851 at Teatro de La Fenice in Venice, the composer suffered agonies as he saw it clash against the censorship walls of the Lombardy-Venice state authorities [Austrian Empire], as it deals with topics which were far too thorny in Italian society before unification. After making some changes, which did not distort the characters or the colour of the work, it was finally premiered to great success.

Rigoletto is the first title of the famous “popular trilogy” by the Busseto maestro. Like the heroes in Il trovatore and La traviata, Rigoletto is a social outcast, a hunchbacked jester who worked at the corrupt court of Mantua in the late 16th century, ruled by the beautiful and young Duke of Mantua, a morbid seducer. When his efforts to safeguard the innocence of his daughter Gilda are shattered by the Duke’s lust, the jester will attempt an impossible revenge.

Giuseppe Finzi is the musical director of the production that features the Orquesta Sinfónica de Tenerife, and the voices of Luis Cansino (baritone); Leonor Bonilla (soprano); Yijie Shi (tenor); Simón Orfila (bass); Guadalupe Barrientos (contralto); Sophie Burns (mezzo soprano); Aleksandr Utkin (bass); Silvia Zorita (mezzo soprano); Jorge Franco (tenor); Matteo Mollica (baritone); Gianni Giuga (baritone) and Beatriz de Sousa (soprano).

The performances on Tuesday, the 19th, Thursday the 21st, and Saturday, the 23rd are taking place at 7:30 pm at Auditorio de Tenerife’s Sala Sinfónica. Tickets for this Ópera de Tenerife show are available through Auditorio de Tenerife usual sale channels, the box office from 10:00 am to 7:30 pm Monday to Saturday; via www.auditoriodetenerife.com or calling 902 317 327.