Rigoletto | Lyric Opera House | Theater & Performance | Chicago Reader
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click to enlarge Quinn Kelsey

Quinn Kelsey

Todd Rosenberg

When: Mondays, Wednesdays-Sundays. Continues through Nov. 3 2017
Price: $17-$319
You can’t sweat the details in Rigoletto. The plot requires suspension of disbelief, especially in its critical scenes of abduction and murder. What’s made this mid-19th-century opera by Verdi (based on a Victor Hugo play) an enduring favorite is the complexity of its bitter and passionate title character, the pathos of his predicament, and the composer's magnificently soaring music. Since his days at the Ryan Opera Center, baritone Quinn Kelsey has made this heartbreaking role his own; his performance in this not-to-be-missed Lyric Opera production is bolstered by superb soprano Rosa Feola as his self-sacrificing daughter, Gilda, and dashing tenor Matthew Polenzani as the libertine who seduces her. The drama's heightened by Michael Yeargan's surrealistic sets (designed for San Francisco Opera and inspired by de Chirico paintings), featuring sharp shadows, deserted arcades, and blood-red interiors on an ominously raked stage. Marco Armiliato conducts the Lyric Opera orchestra and chorus. —Deanna Isaacs

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