Between 1850-53 the Italian composer Giuseppe Verdi produced his greatest masterpieces: Rigoletto, Il Trovatore and La traviata. He followed those works up with Les Vepres Siciliennes in 1855. It’s based on an historical event known as the “Sicilian Vespers” in which a group rebels took up arms in 1282 in a bid to overthrow Charles I of France who had ruled the Kingdom of Sicily since 1266.
The history of the uprising is too complicated to get into here, although there were apparently competing claims to the throne tied to Germany and France and pope Urban IV backed Charles I who eventually seized control. Charles I had designs on expanding his empire into the Mediterranean, and while his reign in Sicily apparently wasn’t oppressive in any way, locals still rebelled.
This afternoon at 2 p.m. at the RPL Theatre there’s a broadcast of a performance by London’s Royal Opera of Verdi’s Les Vepres Siciliennes. Tickets are $15 Adults and $12 for Seniors & Students. To give you sense of what to expect here’s a nine-minute excerpt from a 2013 production at the Royal Opera House:
A MESSAGE TO OUR READERS The coronavirus pandemic is a moment of reckoning for our community. We’re all hurting. It’s no different at Prairie Dog, where COVID-19 has wiped out advertisements for events, businesses and restaurants as Regina and Saskatchewan hunker down in quarantine. As an ad-supported newspaper already struggling in a destabilized media landscape, this is devastating. We’re hoping you, our loyal readers, can help fill in the gap so Prairie Dog can not only continue to exist but even expand our coverage — both in print and online. Please consider donating, either one-time or, even better, on a monthly basis.
We believe Prairie Dog's unique voice is needed, now more than ever. For 27 years, this newspaper has been a critical part of Regina’s social, cultural and democratic infrastructure. Don’t let us fade away. There’s only one Prairie Dog. If it’s destroyed, it’s never coming back.