Orchestre et Choeurs de l’Opéra national de Paris
French and English surtitles
All the world's a farce and man is born a fool.
- Choeur, Acte III, scène finale
There is no work to compare with Falstaff. In his last opera, Giuseppe Verdi, then aged eighty-four, delivered, from behind the mask of his buffoon-like rascal of a hero, the testimony of a life approaching its end and whose moral, like that of the opera, would be: life is but a joke. This indefinable comedy, tinged with pessimism, defies all the conventions of 19th century Italian opera and testifies to Verdi’s passion for the theatre. Dominique Pitoiset’s witty, humorous production brings these eccentric characters to life and their sparkling interplay maintains a perfect balance between fantasy and reality, the very essence of the work.