Conductor: Steven Mercurio
Director: Hugo de Ana
La traviata is an opera in three acts by Giuseppe Verdi set to an Italian libretto by Francesco Maria Piave. It is based on La dame aux Camélias (1852), a play adapted from the novel by Alexandre Dumas, fils. The title "La traviata” means literally The Woman Gone Astray, or perhaps more figuratively, The Fallen Woman. It was originally entitled Violetta, after the main character.
The first performance of the opera, on 6 March 1853 in Venice’s La Fenice, was an utter failure. The day after, Verdi wrote to his friend Muzio in what has now become perhaps his most famous letter: "La traviata last night a failure. My fault or the singers’? Time will tell.” This letter not only implies what Verdi already knew – that the singers, particularly the obese soprano who could never convincingly play a dying consumptive, had failed to "understand his music.” But more importantly, this letter captures Verdi’s faith that the public ultimately knows what is and is not good art and will pronounce its judgment in good time.
More than 150 years later, one cannot but confirm that the composer was right, as he had created an opera masterpiece, a unique and expressive love story that is loved by millions of opera fans throughout the world.