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Jules Massenet’s “Don Quichotte”

Lyric Opera of Chicago presents Jules Massenet’s Don Quichotte (1910), written toward the end of the composer’s life, when he was in ill health and enamored of the much younger singer for whom he composed the role of Dulcinée. Criticized for straying too far from Cervantes’s masterpiece, Henri Caïn’s libretto is actually based on a 1904 stage adaptation of the novel in which the knight errant’s love interest is a standard coquette rather than a simple country girl whom he envisions as a lady. The opera’s strength lies in its music, vividly evoking Spain and showcasing the talents of the singer in the title role, here the Italian bass Ferrucio Furlanetto.

In French with English titles.