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City of Perth Opera in the Park 2016: Gianni Schicchi
The City of Perth’s Opera in the Park is always one of the most eagerly-awaited free events on the Perth summer calendar. In 2016, the comic opera, Gianna Schicchi, by the great Italian composer, Giacomo Puccini, will be presented under the stars in Perth’s Langley Park association with West Australian Opera.
This opera has it all: greed, subterfuge, prejudice, bribery, betrayal...and true love. Buoso Donati’s relatives are alarmed when the recently-departed Florentine noble’s will reveals that he has bequeathed his entire fortune to a monastery. In seeking some way to overturn the terms of the will, the relatives desperately turn to Gianni Schicchi who devises a plan to conceal Buoso Donati’s death and impersonate the late noble for the purposes of dictating a new will that is favourable to the assembled relatives. Could anything be more simple?
6 Feb, 2016 - 6 Feb, 2016Watch Trailer
About the show
Like vultures, family members gather around the bed of recently deceased aristocrat, Buoso Donati, to mourn his passing, while secretly hoping to inherit his great fortune. Betto, Donati’s estranged brother-in-law, mentions a rumor that Donati has left his entire fortune to a monastery. The family begins to frantically search for Donati’s will. It is finally found by Rinuccio, the son of Donati’s cousin, Zita, who asks for permission to marry Lauretta, the daughter of Gianni Schicchi. Zita tells him that he can marry whomever he pleases once he gains his inheritance. Rinuccio sends a note inviting Schicchi and his daughter Lauretta.
When the will is read their fears are confirmed. Donati has left them nothing. Schicchi, and Lauretta arrive and are treated poorly by the family. Rinuccio thinks that Schicchi can help recover Donati’s wealth. Schicchi insulted by the family’s behaviour, refuses to help. When Lauretta begs him (singing the famous “O mio babbino caro”), he finally changes his mind.
The family moves Donati’s lifeless body into another room and call upon the doctor. Schicchi hides behind the bed curtains when the doctor arrives. Believing Donati has recovered, the doctor departs boasting of his admirable skills unaware that he has been duped. Schicchi now has paperwork documenting that Donati is still alive. Disguising himself as Donati, he sets about creating a new will. When the notary arrives, Schicchi begins to dictate the new will. He lists the items each family member has bribed him to include, which delights each one. However, when he states that the house, mill, and mule have been left to his “good friend, Gianni Schicchi” the family become furious, but are unable to say a word. If they speak up, the notary will discover their plot and void the will. After the new will is notarized and the official leaves, a huge argument erupts. Schicchi kicks them all out of the house, which he now owns. Rinuccio and Lauretta remain and Schicchi approves their union.
CAST AND CREATIVE
Conductor – Brad Cohen
Director – Lindy Hume
Production Manager – Mandy Farmer
Site Manager – Matthew Nankivell
Lighting Designer – Sean McKernan
Gianni Schicchi – Douglas McNicol
Lauretta – Kiandra Howarth
Zita – Fiona Campbell
Rinuccio – Virgilio Marino
Gherardo – Matthew Lester
Nella – Katja Webb
Gherardino Lucy Mervik
Betto di Signa Mark Alderson
Simone Andrew Collis
Marco Sam Roberts-Smith
Maestro Spinelloccio/ Ser Amantio di Nicolao Robert Hofmann
Pinellino Paull-Anthony Keightley
Guccio Mark Hurst