In the autumn of his life, Claudio Monteverdi returned to the genre he had put on the map more than thirty years previously: opera. Il ritorno d'Ulisse in patria (1639) describes Odysseus' return from the Trojan War. Once at home, Homer's hero finds that three rivals are paying court to his wife Penelope. Following a gruesome denouement, true love triumphs. It is surprising that Ulisse is rarely performed these days, considering that the sensational libretto and rich score make it a prototype of modern opera. Monteverdi explores the psychology of gods and mortals in expressive recitatives and ensembles, underpinned by a continuo part that is both illustrative and crucial. B'Rock and a cast of superb singers, conducted by René Jacobs, tell this story of fidelity and seduction, doubt and catharsis.
Coproduction: Klarafestival, De Munt / La Monnaie, Bozar