Opera Birmingham to present "demanding" Rigoletto

Opera Birmingham will present Rigoletto, a political and personal thriller,by Verdi. {}Alabama's largest opera company will perform the work Friday, January 24, 2014, at 7:30PM and Sunday, January 26, 2014, at 2:30PM at the Wright Center at Samford University.{}{}According to a news release: "One of opera's most vivid and convincing characters, a vengeful court jester, desperately tries to protect his daughter from disaster in this heart-wrenching tragedy. Set in a world where murder is sport, and debauchery a way of life, Rigoletto is an intense, emotional tale of operatic proportions. This iconic melodrama boasts an action-packed plot, complex characters, and Verdi's brilliant music at its finest."{}Baritone Todd Thomas is in the title role, which many consider one of the most demanding, both musically and dramatically, in the operatic repertoire for a baritone. The Des Moines Register, in its review, said, "...Todd Thomas sings with such finesse and acts with such depth that it is impossible to conceive of a more perfect portrayal of the complex, ill-fated character. He simply is Rigoletto. His is a poignant performance to remember."{}The production will feature the Opera Birmingham Chorus (led by Chorus master Daniel Siegel) and the Alabama Symphony Orchestra. Rigoletto will be sung in the original Italian but presented with projected English translations, so the audience can understand every twist and turn of the plot.{}