Conductor: Simon Krečič
Melodramma giocoso (comic opera) in two acts.
Libretto by Felice Romani after Le philtre di Eugène Scribe
inspired by the cycle "El circo" by Fernando Botero
Director & Set designer Victor García Sierra
Main performers: Claudia Pavone, Francesco Castoro, Bruno de Simone, Leon Kim
A production by Nausica Opera International
Orchestra and Choir by Fondazione Teatro Lirico Giuseppe Verdi di Trieste
Choirmaster Francesca Tosi
An open space in a farm.
Adina, young and wealthy owner of a local farm, her friend Giannetta and a group of harvesters and peasants are resting beneath a shade tree on her estate. Adina is reading the story of Tristan and Isotta–of how he won her heart by drinking a magic love potion–and makes funny comments with her friends. At a distance, Nemorino, a young and shy villager, laments he has nothing to offer Adina but love. He tried to find his way into her fickle and capricious heart, but in vain. The capricious Adina seems to prefer the insolent court of Belcore, a pompous and conceited sergeant of the garrison in the village. Belcore arrives at the head of a group of soldiers and offers Adina a bunch of flowers, renewing his love to the girl, thus making Nemorino angry and hopeless. Left alone with the girl, Nemorino tries once again to move Adina, but in vain she advises him to follow her example: to enjoy his life without falling in love seriously with anyone, and to forget her. She is too fickle to be devoted to one man only.
The village square.
Preceded by blares and excited comments of the villagers, Doctor Dulcamara, a picturesque and talkative charlatan, arrives in the village on a golden cart. Claiming loudly the goodness and the great quality of his product, he sells a miraculous elixir a remedy to all diseases. Of course, one of the first to be taken in is Nemorino: he buys, for a sequin, a bottle of common wine and drinks it, convinced that it’s the same drink that made queen Isotta fall in love with Tristan and that Adina, within twenty-four hours, will do nothing but fall deeply in love with him. The wine soon begins to take effect: euphoric and tipsy, Nemorino starts singing and laughing and pretends indifference, certain of winning Adina’s love. But Adina gets so angry that, in order to punish him for that offensive indifference, accepts to merry Belcore. The sergeant suggests that they have to celebrate the wedding immediately because he has to return to his garrison. While Adina is inviting everyone to the wedding feast, Nemorino is upset for this turn of events and begs Adina to delay the wedding for at least one day–the time to reach the complete effect of the elixir. But she is inflexible and goes away arm in arm with Belcore, leaving Nemorino in despair.
At Adina’s farm.
The villagers are preparing the wedding banquet for Adina and Belcore. While Doctor Dulcamara is singing a merry song with Adina, the notary arrives to sign the marriage contract. Adina hesitates because Nemorino is not there: she wants to sign it in his presence to have a complete revenge on him. Dulcamara is joined by Nemorino: he hasn’t got the money to buy another bottle of elixir. Belcore returns, irritated because Adina has postponed the wedding until nightfall. He asks Nemorino why he is so sad and then convinces him to join the army to obtain a bonus of twenty ducats, awaiting all volunteers, and buy the elixir. Thus, the sergeant can get rid of the rival. Now that he has the money, Nemorino is sure he will win Adina’s heart before leaving with the soldiers.
A rustic courtyard.
Giannetta spreads the rumour in the village that Nemorino’s uncle has died and has left his nephew a large sum of money. Nemorino, unaware of this recent event, finds himself surrounded by all the village girls and thinks that this is due to the effect of the elixir. Adina is surprised, too, of what is happening: Dulcamara explains to the girl the matter of the love potion, but he himself finds unbelievable that the elixir had that effect. Belcore tells Adina that Nemorino has joined the army: struck by the thought that the young man has been deprived of his freedom because of his love for her, the girl feels, at last, the love that she never wanted to admit even to herself. Nemorino has noticed Adina’s anxiety and a furtive tear on her cheek, but he acts disinterested. In a moved talk, Adina gives the youth his enlistment contract that she has bought back from Belcore. Now they can declare their mutual love. Doctor Dulcamara quickly sells many bottles of his elixir, since everyone attributes to it Nemorino’s happiness and inheritance. So, the quack leaves the village among general enthusiasm, accompanied by the invectives of Belcore, who’s been made a laughing-stock, but also by the blessing of Adina and Nemorino, now united and happy.