Opera "La Traviata": content, video, interesting facts, history

D. Verdi opera "La Traviata"

Not a single melody, not a single superfluous word - the music of this opera captures from the first sounds and becomes love for life. Her every note is imbued with the feeling and inspiration of the creator. The passion and self-sacrifice of the unfortunate courtesan found eternal life in brilliant works of art, one of which is "Traviata"Giuseppe Verdi.

Summary of the opera Verdi "La Traviata" and many interesting facts about this work, read on our page.




Violetta Valerysopranomain heroine, courtesan
Alfred Germontenoryoung man in love with Violetta
Georges GermontbaritoneAlfred's father
Flora bervoismezzo-sopranoVioletta's friend, courtesan
Baron DufolbaritoneVioletta's patron and lover
Viscount Gaston de LetoriertenorAlfred's friend introducing him to Violetta
AnninasopranoVioleta's maid, devoted to her to the end
Dr. GranvillebassDr. Violetta

Summary of "Traviata"

The plot of the opera unfolds in Paris in the middle of the XIX century. The courtesan Violetta arranges a magnificent reception in his home in honor of his recovery. A full living room of friends, fun, laughter, dancing ... Among the guests is Alfred Germont who has arrived in the capital. At first glance, he falls in love with Violetta. The young man’s sincere confessions touch her heart, and she, in spite of many doubts, assigns him a speedy date.

Heroes leave Paris and settle in a small country house. They are incredibly in love with each other, but their life cannot be called happy: Alfred has no income, and Violetta secretly sells his property from him. The young man finds out about this and goes to Paris to settle financial matters. In his absence, Georges Germont comes to Violetta. He asks her to stop the shameful son of the bond - she casts a shadow on the whole family and threatens the wedding of Sister Alfred. Recalling the short-term youthful passion, Jermon breaks the will of the unfortunate, which gives him the word that he will leave Alfred forever ...

At the ball at Flora, Alfred is lucky in the game. By the time Dyufol and Violet arrived, he had already won enough and had been drunk enough. Having unsuccessfully tried to talk to her beloved, a hot young man, with all of them, throws money at her face as payment for the time she spent with him.

After experiencing Violetta no longer gets out of bed. The doctor leaves no hope, but suddenly is Alfred, who learned from his father about the reasons that forced the girl to part with him. Germon arrives and pleads for forgiveness. It seems to the poor thing that she is getting better, but after a moment with the words of joy on her lips, she dies.

Duration of performance
I Act Act IIAct III
35 min. 65 min.30 min.

A photo:

Interesting Facts

  • The main heroine of the novel "The Lady with Camellias" is a real woman, a Parisian courtesan Marie Duplessi, who lived in the first half of the XIX century. She won the heart of not only the Dumas son, but also the greatest pianist of the century Franz Liszt.
  • Fanny Salvini-Donatelli, the first performer of the role of Violetta, was born in a wealthy family, but her father’s death and financial difficulties forced her to earn acting skills. She was a very well-educated person, her pen are translations of several librettos by Verdi’s operas Donizetti into french.
  • Despite all the jokes and taunts about Fanny Salvini-Donatelli, the audience and critics highly appreciated her singing, and the premiere shows themselves could only be considered a failure. The audience with great excitement went to a scandalous production, and every evening “La Traviata” brought twice as much money as the other two operas D. Verdigoing to La Fenice: "Corsair" and "Ernani".
  • Traviato was repeatedly screened: in 1967, the opera was shot by director Mario Lanfranca, in 1982, the eponymous film by Franco Zeffirelli was released.

  • Today "La Traviata" ranks first among all operas performed in the world.
  • The story of the scandalous connection touched the composer deeply also because it echoed his own life. By linking his fate with the singer Giuseppina Strepponi, who had a flawed reputation and three children from different men, none of whom was her husband, Verdi was forced to live for 12 years in an atmosphere of public censure. They only got married in 1859.
  • One of the problems that opera directors faced was the choice of the singer for the main part. All the sopranos of the theater had very curvaceous forms, which in no way corresponded to the image of the sick consumption of Violetta. But there were no other vocalists: Violetta "sparkled" on the stage with her own volumes and occasionally coughed, which caused laughter from the audience.

  • Alexandre Dumas son, after his acquaintance with the opera La Traviata, said that after 50 years no one would have remembered the work The Lady with Camellias, but thanks to Verdi it became immortal.
  • The name "Traviata" in Italian means "fallen", "lost".
  • The popular movie "Pretty Woman" of 1990 with Richard Gere and Julia Roberts is closely intertwined with "La Traviata". The content of both works tells about a courtesan who fell in love with a rich man. The film contains scenes related to Verdi’s opera. So, there is a scene where the character of Richard Gere (Edward) takes Julia Roberts (Vivian) to the Opera House on La Traviata, and at the end of the film Edward performs a love serenade for Vivian under the phonogram from La Traviata. Aria was arranged specifically for the film.
  • By the will of fate and Anfolsina Plessis (this is the real name of Marie Duplessi), and Alexandre Dumas son are buried close to each other in the cemetery of Montmartre.

Popular arias and excerpts from the opera "La Traviata"

Violetta aria "addio del passato ..." (listen)

Alfred's aria "Lunge da lei ..." (listen)

Violetta's aria "E 'strano! E' strano! ..." (listen)

The table (listen)

Germont's aria "Di Provenza il mare, il suol" (listen)

The history of the creation of "Traviata"

Performance based on the play Dumas-Son "Lady with Camellias" Verdi visited in Paris in 1852. The story touched him to tears and completely captured the imagination. The libretto composer ordered Francesco Maria Piave, with whom they have already written five operas, including "Rigoletto"." Traviata "was created with unprecedented inspiration, the maestro wrote the first notes in December 1852, and after 40 days he completed the score completely. This despite the fact that in parallel, in January 1853, he released the premiere in Rome."Troubadour"!

The composer presented such an ambiguous heroine with exceptional compassion and love. He showed her nobility, despite who she was in the eyes of society. Verdi was very demanding about the content of the opera, there are only a few “narrative” scenes in the performance, most of the arias, duets, choirs work to develop the plot. Perhaps, for the first time in the opera house, the characters received such authentic psychological portraits - their actions and words are absolutely real.


March 6, 1853 in the Venetian theater La Fenice held the premiere of "La Traviata", which ended in a grand fiasco. One of the reasons for this was the choice of the central character - for the first time, it was the fallen woman. In addition, the stage was a contemporary of the public, whose appearance and costume was not at all different from the ladies from a decent society present in the hall. This could not get away with even the famous Verdi. To top it off, the audience was disappointed with the quality of the performance of the opera.

After just a year, the creators of "Traviata" went on about the public and moved the action a hundred years earlier, slightly editing it. All the same, in Venice, in the theater of San Benedetto in 1855, "Traviata" was shown with a more successful composition of soloists. Since then, began its triumphal march through the world. However, the characters of the opera could return from the 1700s only thirty years later.

Selected productions

Since 1855 "La Traviata" was successfully staged in all the most famous scenes in Europe and America. Russian art lovers were able to get acquainted with this masterpiece in 1858, and 10 years later the Mariinsky Theater staged an opera in Russian. Violetta’s brilliant part fell in love not only with all admirers of the great composer’s talent, but also with singers, having won the hearts of many famous sopranos. Among them are Adeline Patti, Rosa Ponsel, Maria Callas, Joan Sutherland and Montserrat Caballe.

Cinematography also did not pass "Traviata" with its attention. In 1982, the opera was filmed by Frank Zeffirelli. The director first turned to Verdi masterpiece in 1959, staging a play for Maria Callas at La Scala. This production goes to the theater today.

In 2000, director Giuseppe Patroni Griffi and producer Andrea Andermann carried out an ambitious project that has been under preparation for almost eight years - “La Traviata in Paris”. The opera was filmed in real time and for two days was broadcast live in 125 countries around the world. The special atmosphere was given by the shooting that took place approximately where the events took place: the Italian Embassy in Paris, Versailles, the Paris-Palais, the island of Saint-Louis.

Directors never abandoned attempts to show a super popular opera from the new side. So, in 1995 the premiere of "Traviata" was held in Moscow "Helikon-Opera". The performance was innovative, Dmitry Bertman placed a large bed in the center of the stage, and presented the heroine himself surrounded by a pile of children's toys. Alexander Titel for his version, staged in the Musical Theater. Stanislavsky and Nemirovich-Danchenko, moved all the events into the present, replacing the high society balls with loose parties at the club.

One of the most famous productions is the work of director Willie Decker at the 2005 Salzburg Festival. From the scenery on the stage there was only a bench-step along the wall and a large round clock, and the whole crowd was dressed in identical black trouser suits. This miserly background was the perfect setting for Anna Netrebko’s fabulous actor’s work, Rolando Villazón and Thomas Hampson.

In October 2012, the Bolshoi Theater presented its version of "La Traviata". Francesco Zambello performed one of the most unusual and costly productions, for which 186 costumes were prepared. The main action of the opera took place in a hospital where the main character recalled the events of her life. They flashed with bright pictures, and the dreary chamber suddenly turned into a colorful suburb of Paris, now into chic ballrooms.

Music from the opera "La Traviata" in the movies

  • Music from the 6th scene "Dammi tu forza, o cielo!" can be heard in the movie "Pretty Woman" (1990).
  • Aria germontSounds in films "Bruno" (2009) and "Year of the weapon" (1991).
  • Most Popular "Table"also in demand in the movies. It is used in films such as "The Godfather" (1992), "In Line of Fire" (1993), "007: SPECTRUM" (2015), "Love Snag" (2015), "In Love and War" (1996) , Midsummer Night's Dream (1999), The Farewell Quartet (2012), Rat Races (2001), Yves Saint Laurent (2014).
  • Alfred and Violetta duet "Parigi, o cara, noi lasceremo"can be heard in "Bruno" (2009) and in George Miller's masterpiece "Oil of Lorenzo" (1992).
  • Violetta cabaret "Sempre libera degg'io"Meets in the musical comedy "The Adventures of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert" (1994).
  • In the Oscar-winning film of 2016 "La La Land" sounds choir "Si ridesta in ciel l'aurora".
  • Alfred and Violetta duet "Un di, felice, eterea"Meets in the films: "Bitter tears of Petra Von Kant" (1972) and "I am the beginning" (2014).

In the world there is no opera house, in which they would not sing "Traviata" Giuseppe Verdi. There is not a single outstanding soprano, in the repertoire of which Violetta would not have a party. Without this piece of art, opera art would be almost half impoverished. La Traviata is not only an immortal masterpiece, but also a vivid example of how sometimes one small destiny can turn the story around and excite human hearts for many centuries.


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