George Gagnidze Leads Atlanta Opera’s ‘Rigoletto’

By Francisco Salazar

The Atlanta Opera is set to open its mainstage season with Verdi’s “Rigoletto.”

The new production by Tomer Zvulun will be performed on Nov 4 -7, 2023 at the Cobb Energy Performing Arts Centre.

Regarding his new production, Zvulum said, “Verdi’s iconic clown character, Rigoletto, is doomed from the very first scene to a cursed fate. Our production highlights his decline. Particularly the psychological one. We leaned into the aesthetic of German painters Otto Dix and George Grosz and their cinematic successors Fellini and Buñuel to present the abstraction, grittiness, and surrealism that are essential to our story. We are excited to bring this production to Atlanta after its successful runs in Houston and Dallas. ‘Rigoletto’ is the perfect vehicle for exceptional singers. When we last did it in Atlanta in 2015, it featured a young singer, Nadine Sierra, who went on to become one of opera’s greatest stars. Almost a decade later, we are so pleased to bring the formidable powerhouse voices of George Gagnidze, who is making his Atlanta debut, and Atlanta favorite Jasmine Habersham as Gilda. It will be exciting to witness conductor Roberto Kalb, a rising force in the world of opera, interacting with our wonderful orchestra for the first time.”

Roberto Kalb will conduct a cast that includes George Gagnidze as Rigoletto, Won Whi Choi as Duke of Mantua, Jasmine Habersham as Gilda, and Patrick Guetti as Sparafucile.

The opera will be live streamed on Nov. 10 for free at 7 p.m. There will also be pre-performance presentations that are free to ticket holders one hour before the performance with general seating in the main orchestra section.