Montalti: World Premiere at Maggio Musicale Fiorentino
May 25 marks the world premiere of Vittorio Montalti’s latest opera, Le leggi fondamentali della stupidità umana. Opera quasi intelligente
(The Basic Laws of Human Stupidity. An Almost Intelligent Opera
), at Florence’s Teatro Goldoni, as part of the annual music festival Maggio Musicale Fiorentino. Book by Giuliano Compagno, based on Carlo M.Cipolla’s satire "The Basic Laws of Human Stupidity" (originally published in Italian in 1988 by Società Editrice il Mulino, Bologna ). Repeat performances May 29 and 31.
Le leggi fondamentali della stupidità umana
’s fourth opera written with librettist Compagno.
The composer had this to say about the work:
In our first three works of musical theater, our starting point was always based on a book that, despite the desired fragmented narration, told a very clear-cut story. But this time around, we approached the piece from a wholly different perspective and sought out something more abstract, which took our previous methods and intents to the extreme. We conceived this opera as a kind of sweeping mechanism that housed a series of very different musical situations flowing into one another. The purely musical dramaturgy tells a story that is totally abstract, one which revolves around the theme of stupidity.
Taking its cue from Carlo M.Cipolla’s sarcastic primer outlining the five fundamentals of human stupidity, Montalti’s opera is itself comprised of five parts, one for each of Cipolla’s laws. From there, each section is subdivided into five parts, divided up based on a golden ratio premise.
Four main characters take the stage: the Intelligent Person (soprano), the Bandit (contralto), the Stupid Person (tenor), and the Helpless Person (basso). They are accompanied by a narrator and a 13-piece ensemble, along with electronics that enhance and intensify vocal and instrumental performances.
Featuring the ContempoArtEnsemble, conducted by Fabio Maestri. Production directed by Giancarlo Cauteruccio.
Vittorio Montalti’s Le leggi fondamentali della stupidità umana
was commissioned by Maggio Musicale Fiorentino Foundation.
Images: sketches by Giancarlo Cauteruccio and Massimo Bevilacqua