Arts & Culture

Sarasota Opera presents Verdi on screen

Opera lovers in the Bradenton area are facing a long dry spell. The next live opera from the Sarasota Opera is six months away. (That's Puccini's "La Boheme," which opens Oct. 30). The winter opera festival season is three months after that.

But there's some significant respite from the "HD at the Opera House" series, which offers screenings of operas, ballets and classic movies (but mostly opera). Between now and early October, the Opera House will offer 22 screenings.

This week it's Giuseppi Verdi's "I due Foscari," in a 2014 production at the Royal Opera House. It features the great Placido Domingo in his first London performance. It was also the Royal Opera debut of American director Thaddeus Strassberger

The two Foscaris of the title are the city's Doge, Francesco Foscari (sung by Domingo) and his son Jacopo (Francesco Meli), who has been brought back from exile to face charges of treason. Jacopo is innocent, but neither the pleas of Jacopo's wife Lucrezia (Maria Agresta) nor those of his powerful father are enough to save Jacopo from condemnation by the hostile Council of Twelve.

Verdi and librettist libretto by Francesco Maria Piave based the opera on a play by Lord Byron. It's an early Verdi work -- just his sixth opera -- and it's considered one of his most tragic.

Details: 7 p.m. May 7 and 1:30 p.m. May 10, Sarasota Opera House, 61 N. Pineapple Ave., Sarasota. Tickets: $20. Information: 941-328-1300, sarasotaopera.org.

-- Marty Clear

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