Force of Destiny, The (La forza del destino)

Opera in four acts

Composer: Verdi, Giuseppe 1813 - 1901

Version: English version by Jeremy Sams

Still widely performed today, Verdi’s La forza del destino (The Force of Destiny) was first performed in St. Petersburg, Russia, on 10 November 1862. The opera was later revised by Verdi, and the version which premiered in Milan in February 1869 has become the standard performance version. The most important changes were a new overture, the addition of a final scene to Act 3, and a new ending - in which Don Alvaro remains alive, instead of throwing himself off a cliff. SYNOPSIS: Mid-eigteenth-century, Spain and Italy. Don Alvaro, a young nobleman from South America, falls in love with Leonora, daughter of the Marquis of Calatrava, who is vehemently against the union. Alvaro accidentally shoots the Marquis who dies, cursing his daughter, who takes refuge in a monastery. Meanwhile, Alvaro joins the army and becomes friendly with Don Carlo, unaware that he is Leonora’s brother. When they become aware of each other’s identities, Don Carlo is determined to avenge his father’s death. Alvaro fatally wounds Don Carlo in a fight and calls for help. Leonora arrives to tend to her brother, who stabs her in the heart.