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Giacomo Puccini Opera. Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, WC2.

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      26.10.2000 22:03
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      I don’t see opera very often but after this excellent performance at the Royal Opera house, I will look out for more shows. Tosca, by Giacomo Puccini, is a love story between Floria Tosca, a lady with very strong personality, and Cavaradossi, an escaped political prisoner. The place is Rome, June 1800, while Napoleon is in a major battle with the Austrians at Marengo. Baron Scarpia, chief of the secret police, is in search of Cavaradossi and the beauty of Tosca intoxicates him too. Just when you think you have had enough of tearing vocals and passionate feelings, the opera reaches a new level. The singers performed very well and the settings were atmospheric and changed swiftly. Do not worry if you don’t speak any Italian at all, subtitles are elegantly displayed above the scene. After a little researching, I found out that Tosca is a very complex opera with profound levels that I wasn’t aware of during the performance. Still, Tosca is also about universal themes that every one can enjoy and shed a tear to. Half of the experience was just being inside the wonderful Royal Opera in Covent Garden. During the intermission, there was just about time to get a glass of champagne, accompanied with a salmon sandwich, and enjoy the view of Covent Garden from the top floor. Unfortunately, just after act I, a nice gentleman behind me was telling his mother how the opera continues and ends. I will spare you the details but after 25 seconds I knew who was going to live, who was going to die and how it all would happen.

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