She was his queen. He was her downfall.
This opera in two acts, commissioned on the occasion of the centenary of the San Francisco Opera, is a co-commission and a co-production with the Gran Teatre del Liceu and The Metropolitan Opera in New York. With a libretto adapted by the composer himself from Shakespeare’s tragedy, composer John Adams, director Elkhanah Pulitzer and playwright Lucia Scheckner combine the mythical image of Antiquity with the glamour of the thirties in Hollywood.
Of all Shakespeare’s plays, Antony and Cleopatra is the only one that fuses in the same piece the love drama, the drama related to power and comedy. A very ambitious creation that deals with the archetypal love affair between the two protagonist figures and also the geostrategy in full decline of the Roman Republic and the rise of the Empire, personified in the young Octavian (Augustus) Caesar. The resonance with today’s world, with the decline of democratic values and the shift of international loyalties, is provocative and very timely.
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