Giuseppe Verdi, I masnadieri (Die Räuber)
Milan, Teatro alla Scala, 18 June 2019
“Verdi’s ugliest opera” returns to La Scala with mixed results
Although the translation of Schiller’s original text attenuated its “criminal gloomy mood”, the critics of the time called I masnadieri (Die Räuber) “an abhorrent and disgusting monstrosity”, accusing it of immorality and incitement to commit crime!
Three men are driven by violent sentiments. Massimiliano (Count Moor) has banished his son, Carlo, who consequently establishes himself at the head of a gang of bandits with the aim of making a massacre of the “cursed clay”, the depraved humanity, while his brother, Francesco, plans to hasten his father’s death to take possession of the estate. In contrast to this world of male brutality stands the pure soul of Amalia, an orphan in love with Carlo…