Opera: Passion, Power and Politics
Sponsored by Societe Generale · In collaboration with Royal Opera House
Queen Victoria adored Italian opera and learned to sing operatic arias while Verdi was one of the very few major artists to have a sophisticated interest in international politics. The "two V's" died within five days of each other (January 1901). Both went into semi-retirement in middle age (arousing popular resentment), eventually re-emerging into the spotlight, and both were mourned on their deaths as having been the embodiment of the culture of their respective nations. With musical interludes, this talk will illuminate the similarities between Verdi and Queen Victoria.