Teatro Real de Madrid
Text by Francesco Maria Piave based on the drama Le roi s’amuse by Victor Hugo
In Italian with captions
Location Großer Saal Musiktheater
"It’s the epitome of the Italian opera. Verdi’s Rigoletto was inspired by the ideas and spirit, as well as the rich cultural history of 19th Century France. While searching for the appropriate theme, Verdi finally decided to use Victor Hugo’s Le roi s’amuse (The King Amuses Himself). On the urging of Austrian censors librettist, Francesco Maria Piave, moved the location of the story from Paris to the Italian town of Mantua. Despite the initial difficulties Verdi encountered, Victor Hugo’s figure of the ambivalent, hunchback court jester, Rigoletto, as the main protagonist in the opera that, in a somewhat concealed way, has evolved into perhaps the composer’s most political work. Nonetheless, it served as a foundation for his international acclaim. "