The Royal Opera House: Macbeth

Phyllidas Lloyd's much-acclaimed production of the first fruit of Verdi's lifelong love affair with Shakespeare - live from the Royal Opera House.

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Phyllidas Lloyd's much-acclaimed production of the first fruit of Verdi's lifelong love affair with Shakespeare - live from the Royal Opera House. So taken was Giuseppe Verdi with Shakespeare's tragedy that he pronounced it "one of the greatest creations of man". In 1846, he set about using the play as the basis for "something out of the ordinary" on the operatic stage, in collaboration with his lifelong friend and librettist Francesco Maria Piave. Verdi's masterstrokes were the macabre choruses for the witches, the evocative orchestral colours and the expanded role for Lady Macbeth. Last presented by the Royal Opera House in 2006, Phyllida Lloyd's production uses Verdi's 1865 revision, for which the composer took the opportunity for a complete overhaul of his work. This is especially noted for Lady Macbeth's great aria 'La luce langue' and the wonderful Act IV opening chorus. Simon Keenlyside and Liudmyla Monastryrska play the Scottish nobleman and his villainously ambitious wife, while American bass-baritone Raymond Aceto takes the role of Banquo.

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