Verdi: Rigoletto

Opera 100

Here we write a 100-word précis of numerous opera plots. This is an ongoing and serendipitous series, the idea being to present the storyline in an instant.

Verdi: Rigoletto

by: Alexander Campbell

Interrupting a party Count Monterone curses the libertine Duke of Mantua for the seduction of his daughter, but also the Duke’s unpopular jester Rigoletto for malevolence. Returning home Rigoletto encounters the assassin Sparafucile, and then greets his daughter Gilda. Unbeknownst to Rigoletto, Gilda loves a student, Gaultier Malde (the disguised Duke). Assuming she is Rigoletto’s mistress, the Duke’s courtiers abduct Gilda, and the Duke then ravishes her. The vengeful Rigoletto hires Sparafucile, whose sister Maddalena lures the Duke to his fate. But Gilda, witness to the plot, sacrifices herself in his place. Rigoletto finds her dying and recalls Monterone’s curse.  

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