Giuseppe Verdi

Stellar baritone Leo Nucci takes to the stage for Verdi’s founding opera in which courage and excess vie with each other with panache.

Leo Nucci © Roberto Ricci
Daniele Rustioni © P. Cofano


Leo Nucci Nabucco
Anna Pirozzi Abigaïlle
Antonio Poli Ismaël
Riccardo Zanellato Zaccaria
Enkelejda Shkoza Fenena

Daniele Rustioni direction
Opéra national de Lyon Orchestra and Choirs

Sung in Italian with French and English subtitles

Nabucco is in some respects a work which symbolises the power of fate both in personal terms for the musician, and politically for his country. In 1842, Verdi was a broken man after a series of bereavements (his two daughters and his first wife died in the space of just a few months) and Italy was occupied by Austria. Nabucco was his first triumph; it gave a huge boost to his career and became a symbol of Italian nationalism. The biblical content of the libretto is in fact a pretext to celebrate the patriotic feelings of his fellow countrymen and women in the famous Hebrew slaves chorus “Va pensiero”. In addition to revitalising the form, the chorus here becomes the main character in the work. From the opening night, “Va pensiero” became the hymn of the struggle against the oppressor. A collective consciousness was forged; Verdi became a huge success and was immortalised in the history of music and of his country.

Coproduction Théâtre des Champs-Elysées / Opéra national de Lyon

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