Conducted by Riccardo Muti, the master of the Scala in Milan for twenty years (1986 to 2005), the Verdian melodrama unfolds before our eyes directed by Liliana Cavani. This production, recorded live in 2001, is ageless, Cavani's approach being that of timeless tradition: pasteboard and period costumes triumph as if to prove that nothing changes at the Scala.
In any case, musical excellence is pre-eminent as usual: to start with, the role of Riccardo is played by the wonderful Salvatore Licitra who began his career as a tenor precisely with A Masked Ball, in Parma, in 1998. As for Maria Guleghina, she plays an exceptionally good Amelia. The orchestra and chorus of the Scala, as well as all of the soloists, are transported by Riccardo Muti's passionate and contrasted conducting, proving once again what a wonderful Verdian he is.
Libretto by Antonio Somma taken from Gustave III ou Le bal masqué by Eugenio Scribe
Antoni Ros-Marbà, Willy Decker – Giorgio Giuseppini (Lodovico), José Cura (Otello), Vittorio Grigolo (Cassio) – Gran Teatre del Liceu
Antonio Pappano, Nicholas Hytner – Rolando Villazón (Don Carlos), Robert Lloyd (Carlos V), Simon Keenlyside (Rodrigo, Marquis of Posa) – Royal Opera House, Covent Garden