Sat. Oct 19th, 2019

Plácido Domingo, from Boccanegra to father of Joan of Arc

Aided by a cunning enough to verbally transform a piece of copper into real gold, one of the first entrepreneurs in the history of the Teatro Real Temistocle Solera, managed to sell in the 19th century a text by Juana de Arco to the composer Giuseppe Verdi and the publisher of it with the firm conviction of identifying it as "a completely original drama". What Solera fails to point out in a display of creative appropriation is that the libretto was an adaptation cataloged by the current artistic director of the Teatro Real, Juan Matabosch, as "lazy" from the «Jungfrau von Orleans» by the writer Friedrich Schiller. Despite the possible structural deficiencies of the libretto, Verdi is interested in the history of the gala warrior to the point of highlighting to a friend the unusual beauty that the verses of the original possessed in his judgment. In this way, in 1846, driven by a compositional need to take advantage of such intense dramatic situations and the vast range of situations that these texts offered in cultured Italian, Verdi premieres in Madrid under a barrage of scathing criticism «Giovanna d'Arco »

Spain, a democracy

Now, almost three centuries later, "a 16-year-old girl whom weapons do not weigh", in the words of the poet Cristina de Pizán, becomes the backbone of the opera in concert version that the Real premieres tomorrow and with the one that dismisses its lyrical season counting on the figure of Plácido Domingo like main headliner. He who exerted as an orchestra conductor in more than 500 operas and version with fervor the Tenth merengón hymn confessed to the Press the personal desire to concretize the current political situation since "I would like to see that Spain continues with a democracy like the one that has had in the last 40 years. And let the world know that we have it. " Likewise, the Madrileño pointed out the difficulty that this can mean since "if the same politicians are not able to understand the current situation, what are we going to understand?". In this seventh work belonging to the compositions of the first stage of the master of Busseto, Plácido plays the role of the old pastor Giacomo and father of Juana. "I am convinced that we all prefer to do a work on stage. I live on the stage, but I think that is precisely the difficulty for us performers, to represent a character without costumes, without makeup and without movements, "the tenor says about the extra difficulty involved in limiting in this case to the concert format, to the intimate and deliberate exercise of the song, having to forget the interpretative adornment: "However, I think that this execution can entail a very special moment, because it does not distract. You are creating something that does not require more help than the intimacy that you are able to establish with the conductor and with an audience that sometimes seems to be sitting on your knees, "he adds. In the last time, the Spaniard with more than seventy years of career to his credit has interpreted some of the great roles for baritone of Giuseppe Verdi and, this time, through the figure of Giacomo, becomes especially important when he finally turns to thread of a change against the forecast of the story modified by Solera in the main accuser of his own daughter. An informing paper that in the original text is represented by a Holy Inquisition that favors the death of the revolutionary Juana by apostasy and blasphemy, transforming her burning into the manifestation of her victory.


The vindication of her figure all over the world and her elevation to the category of "revolutionary heroine" earned Joan of Arc an extraordinary reputation as an implacable warrior, liberator of cities, crowning of kings and professional avoider of the love of men. Born in a family of peasants, since childhood said that he heard voices that came from the saints. Paradoxically, at the end of his life and thanks to the stubbornness of Carlos VII, it would end up being declared as such. His emotional and aesthetic androgyny became his main hallmark and in the majority impulse of his untamed character. It is, as Louis Sébastien Mercier asserted in 1802, someone who "if he had lived in our days would have taken the Bastille."

(tagsToTranslate) placid sunday

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