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Giuseppe Verdi: Un giorno di regno
Guido Loconsolo (Il cavaliere di Belfiore), Andrea Porta (Il barone di Kelbar), Anna Caterina Antonacci (La marchesa del Poggio), Alessandra Marianelli (Giulietta di Kelbar), Ivan Magrì (Edoardo di Sanval), Paolo Bordogna (Il signor La Rocca), Ricardo Mirabelli (Il conte Ivrea), Seung Hwa Paek (Delmonte/Servant), Coro del Teatro Regio di Parma, Martino Faggiani (Chorus Master), Orchestra del Teatro Regio di Parma, Donato Renzetti (Conductor, Tiziano Mancini (Video Director), Hartmut Bender (Video Producer), Pier Luigi Pizzi (Stage Director/Set Designer/Costume Designer), Vincenzo Raponi (Lighting Designer), Luca Veggetti (Choreographer)
Recorded live at the Teatro Regio di Parma, Parma, Italy (January 31, 2010) – 129’ (including bonus introduction)
C Major Entertainment # 720208 (distributed by Naxos of America) – Booklet in English, German, French and Italian – Subtitles available in Italian, English, German, French, Spanish, Chinese, Korean and Japanese

“I was alone! ... alone! ... I had lost three loved ones. My whole family was gone... And in this terrible anguish of soul, to avoid breaking the engagement I had contracted, I was compelled to write an entire comic opera!” (REF: Music Academy Online.) Bereft with the loss of his wife and two children, Giuseppe Verdi was ironically rewarded with Bartolomeo Merelli’s contract to create three additional operas due to the successful premiere of Verdi’s first opera, Oberto (1839). But the first of these designations was consigned to be a comic opera, a setting based on the text of librettist Adalabert Gyrowetz (having already been created for La Scala in 1818.) Verdi’s attempt was awash with gradient attitude. Opening on September 5, 1840, Un giorno di regno never had a second chance with exception of three 19th century performances held in Rome, Venice and Naples. An orphan in the Verdi canon, Un giorno di regno is now being re-examined and conservatively reinstated. This understated 2010 Pier Luigi Pizzi production facilitates Verdi’s early music through artistic interpretation in scenic design and costuming with complements of Vincenzo Raponi’s superb lighting techniques.

Luca Veggetti magnifies Verdi’s tendril creation with innovative and continually fluid choreography. Despite the absurdities based on Alexandre Vincent Pineu-Duval’s comedy Le faux Stanislas (1808), Verdi’s music is an amalgam of past influences beginning with Mozart’s brevity of recitativo secco (ref: Don Giovanni), combined with Rossini-laden rapid crescendos, a Bellini emphasized 3/4 aria aura, and Donizetti intensiveness. Overall, however, Giuseppe Verdi manages to create Un giorno di regno with restraint and quaggy malleability, and it definitely has the indelible “Verdi” mark on the score. There’s no ability to be sidelined by this music, for Giuseppe Verdi produces a constant metre change that ultimately adds excitement and dimensional proportion to an already ill-perceived score.

Principals, within the confines of Donato Renzetti’s most capable conducting, add convincing substance. Guido Lonconsolo’s Belfiore is comfortable and authoritarian, Paolo Bordogna in the role of La Rocca is the most animated character within the brackets of melodramma giocoso, Anna Caterina Atonacci delivers a solid and stalwart delivery as La marchesa del Poggio. Though Ivan Magrì’s Edoardo di Sanval’s gesticulations are a bit stiff, he is still able to deliver a beautifully executed tenor timbre that helps solidify his relationship with his betrothed, Giulietta, sung by Alessandra Marianelli.

Though Verdi isn’t in his “comfort zone” in this particular opera, Un giorno di regno, nonetheless, showcases the Italian composer’s early transcendent buffa in an elegant, respectful manner. Set aside the complications within Giuseppe Verdi’s life at the time, it is a light-hearted and delightful entrée. Highly recommended.

Christie Grimstad




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