The Scarlet & Black

The Student News Site of Grinnell College

The Scarlet & Black

The Scarlet & Black

ernani opens the harris opera season

While most people were sleeping in last Saturday, a larger than expected audience spent their morning and mid-afternoon at the Harris Cinema for an exclusive viewing of Ernani live in High Definition (HD) by The Metropolitan Opera. The performance had an approximate running time of four hours with two 30-minute intermissions. The opera was sung in Italian with subtitles in English. It marks The Met’s sixth season in live HD releases.

Ernani was penned by Giuseppe Verdi, a 19th century romantic composer. Verdi’s works are known for their emotional intensity and tuneful melodies. His operas are among the most frequently produced today and now, with The Met’s live HD experiences, even more people will have the opportunity to see Verdi’s operas.

The opera revolves around four main characters. The first is a soprano named Elvira, while the other three are men who deeply hate each other: a tenor, a baritone, and a bass. The tenor, Ernani, is the hero. Ernani is the son of a nobleman turned outlaw, who ended up on the wrong side of a civil war. The baritone is King Carlo, who is the historical figure King Charles V of Spain. At first, he seems to be the villain, but by the end of the opera, he is a friend. The bass is the villain, Silva. Silva, the king’s cousin, is the older gentlemen Elvira is forced to marry. Unfortunately, Elvira and Ernani are passionately in love, while King Carlo is also deeply infatuated with Elvira. This creates a disastrous tangle of love, which is perfect for a tragic love story set in early 16th century Spain.

The live HD edition of the opera offers a special experience that even $400 private box tickets cannot give. With the live version, audience members are given the unique chance to see backstage. We were able to see how the stage is set up and to hear special commentary from the performers themselves.

Ernani is played by veteran tenor, Marcello Giordani. Opera News claims that “he is, arguably, the greatest leading tenor of his generation.” King Carlo is played by Dmitri Hvorostovsky, who introduced his kids during the exclu  sive backstage viewing. Elvira is played by Angela Meade, who has a sort of magical back-story. She was in community college for pre-med before she decided to become an opera singer at 21. It was only four years ago that she first stepped out onto the stage.

If you missed Saturday’s showing of Ernani, you will have another chance to see an opera in the coming month. In April, The Met will be presenting two more shows, Manon and La Traviata, another opera by Giuseppe Verdi.

Leave a Comment
More to Discover
Donate to The Scarlet & Black
Our Goal

Comments (0)

All The Scarlet & Black Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *