Tosca Cavaradossi Belgrade National Theatre
maggio 13, 2018
Belgrado Republic of Serbia
Narodno pozorište u Beogradu, Francuska 3, 11000 Belgrade,

Dario di Vietri vestira’ i panni di Cavaradossi nella produzione di Tosca presso il Belgrade National Theatre che andra’ in scena nelle seguenti date: 13 Maggio 2018


Puccini’s Tosca belongs to a group of favourite and most performed operas in general. Writers and reviewers keep giving new hypotheses for reasons of its popularity, while the music publishers keep issuing new recordings of the opera. It seems that the clear, comprehensible and yet exciting plot, placed in a suitable historical era, and two tenor and one soprano arias, together with two grand soprano and tenor duets, provide permanent success, although many considered its contents non-operatic. Puccini watched the performance of Sardou’s Tosca in Milan in 1889, with unique Sarah Bernhardt in the title role. Since he could merely follow the plot, because he did not speak French, he quickly abandoned the idea to write a score for an opera with this plot, which would be produced as a film later on. However, it seems that Verdi appreciated the plot of Tosca as a basis for an opera libretto, since he allegedly stated that he would gladly produce it as an opera, if he only had had the time. After success of La Boheme, Puccini was searching for a suitable libretto and he again paid attention to Tosca. After having heard that composer Franchetti had started working on Illica’s libretto after Sardou’s play, he managed to persuade his publisher Ricordi to have his opponent abandon working on the piece, and then Puccini himself started writing the music to Illica and Giacosa’s libretto. Sardou had some reservations towards Puccini at the beginning, but after long and complicated negotiations, Puccini could finally start working. Numerous minor characters from the plot were excluded from the libretto, less significant scenes were also abandoned, and finally the plot was organised into three acts. Critics find that out of all opera composers Puccini had the most precise feeling for timing plot, for setting length of each scene. Therefore, there are no redundant and tiresome elements in Tosca, or in La Boheme for that matter, and the plot flows without interruption, while the lyrical scenes with arias and duets are in first place. The plot of Tosca is based on love and passion, but also on jealousy, and there are disturbing scenes of torture, murder, execution of capital punishment by a firing squad and suicide. Musically, Tosca is structured as a through-composed work; the voices are always predominant, although the orchestration is quite persuasive, expressive and demanding. Diatonic scales prevail, although full scales can often be heard, and there is also the use of church modes. At the time, Tosca’s score might have shocked listeners, the most potent leitmotif is the sequence of three very loud and strident chords which open the opera and which represent the evil character of Baron Scarpia. However, these chords may sound enjoyable, refined and virtuous to the modern listener. Let us emphasise that Tosca possesses the show off roles for a soprano, tenor and baritone, and that every time three great singers join forces, success of the opera is imminent. One of the first great interpreters of Tosca was Milka Trnina, who triumphed in London and New York as the best Tosca. The role of Tosca has always been interpreted by superb singers in Belgrade as well; all sopranos who interpreted the title role in this opera considered Tosca to be one of their best interpretations. There are numerous recordings of the opera: Renata Tabaldi with Giuseppe Campora and Enzo Mascherini, under the baton of Alberto Erede; another recording of the same soprano with Mario del Monaco and George London, with Molinari-Pradelli conducting; Maria Callas with Giuseppe di Stefano and Tito Gobbi, with Victor de Sabata conducting; and, the best recording according to many people, by Zinka Kunz, Jussi Bjorling and Leonard Warren, under the baton of maestro Erich Leinsdorf.