Don Pasquale is an opera buffa, or comic opera, in three acts by Gaetano Donizetti with an Italian libretto completed largely by Giovanni Ruffini as well as the composer. It was based on a libretto by Angelo Anelli for Stefano Pavesi’s opera Ser Marcantonio written in 1810 but, on the published libretto, the author appears as “M.A.”
Mykhailo Dutchak People’s Artist of Ukraine
Halyna Volovetska Honored Art Worker of Ukraine
Mykhailo Ryndzak People's Artist of Ukraine
Sergyj Naenko Honored Artist of Ukraine
Vasyl Koval Winner of Ukrainian competition
A wealthy artist Don Pasquale is impatiently awaiting the arrival of his doctor Malatesta, who is to suggest a prospective bride for the 70-year-old bachelor. Malatesta describes his beautiful younger sister, Sofronia, whose convent upbringing has taught her the virtues of modesty and frugality. Don Pasquale is dreaming about his own family and six children.
Ernesto, nephew of Don Pasquale, returns home. Don Pasquale is furious over the refusal of Ernesto to marry a rich woman he has chosen for him. Don Pasquale warns Ernesto to forget his beloved poor widow Norina, otherwise he will cut him out of his inheritance. When Ernesto adamantly refuses, Don Pasquale announces his own plans to marry. With no inheritance, Ernesto sees his dreams evaporating. Now he understands that being penniless he cannot marry Norina. To make matters worse, he learns that his friend Malatesta has arranged Don Pasquale’s marriage.
Young widow Norina who is an actress returns home with the present from her beloved Ernesto. That is a book about romantic love. She recites a passage and recalls her flirting in life and on the stage. A servant delivers a letter from Ernesto, which she quickly reads and is instantly dismayed. Her sadness is cut short by the arrival of Dr. Malatesta. He has been secretly supporting her relationship with Ernesto. Norina, heartbroken, hands him Ernesto’s farewell letter. Malatesta reassures her, saying that he has a plan: she must pretend to be his sister. His plan is to drive Don Pasquale nearly insane so that he will bend to their will. Norina happily agrees and pledges to do her best.
Ernesto, ignorant of Malatesta’s plot, expresses his sorrow and wishes Norina to find her true love and forget him.
Don Pasquale is anxious to meet his bride-to-be, and is surprised when Malatesta introduces his sister “Sofronia” perfectly played by Norina. They agree to marry right away. Malatesta brings in his cousin, who pretends to be a notary, to officiate at the mock marriage. The plan almost fails because Ernesto arrives to bid farewell to his uncle and when he recognises Norina as the bride, he nearly ruins everything. No sooner has the fake ceremony taken place and Don Pasquale’s property been signed over to his new bride, than Norina changes from a demure convent girl to an ill-tempered spitfire. Declaring herself mistress of the house, she announces her intention to hire additional servants and purchase costly items for her new home. Don Pasquale, confused and angry, moans that he is ruined.
Don Pasquale sits in a room, surrounded by piles of newly purchased jewels, dresses and the piles of bills. His house is being lavishly redecorated by an army of new servants. Norina enters dressed for the theater. Don Pasquale attempts to reason with her, but she pays little heed. As she exits, she intentionally drops a note which mentions an evening rendezvous with a secret lover in the garden. Don Pasquale reads it in disbelief and goes in search of Malatesta. Malatesta first tells Ernesto to make sure that Don Pasquale will not recognize him when he plays his part in the garden that evening. Then, alone with Don Pasquale, Malatesta assures him they will trap “Sofronia” in a compromising situation.
Later that night in the garden outside of the house, Ernesto and “Sofronia” sing of their love together. When Don Pasquale and Malatesta arrive to catch her, they are unable to see who her admirer was due to his quick escape. “Sofronia” plays the innocent wife however Don Pasquale does not believe her. Malatesta promises to speak to “Sofronia” and offers Don Pasquale to eavesdrop the conversation. Malatestsa says to “Sofronia” that the new hostess of the house, Ernesto’s wife, will arrive the next day. “Sofronia” pretends to be furious. She says that there can be no other woman to live under the same roof as her and that if that happens, then she will divorce Don Pasquale. Malatesta convinces Don Pasquale that the only way to make “Sofronia” leave will be to allow Ernesto to marry. When Ernesto comes out to the garden to ask for Don Pasquale’s permission to marry Norina, he happily agrees and tells him that he will give him an inheritance after all. When Ernesto brings out his new bride, Norina, Pasquale’s jaw drops to the ground. Malatesta fills Don Pasquale in on the plan and everyone makes their amends. Don Pasquale joins in the moral of the story: old people should not get married.
Characters of the comic opera “Don Pasquale”, the old rich bachelor Don Pasquale, his nephew Ernesto, witty doctor Malatesta, young beautiful widow Norina, get into a sticky situation, which could be eased only with a joke. Finally the characters, having cut the Gordian knot, breathe the sigh of relief and fill spectators with positive emotions.
Yuriy Trytsetskyy Honored artist of Ukraine
Vitalij Zagorbenskyj winner of the international competition
Mykola Kornutyak winner of the international competition
Petro Radeyko winner of the international competition
Yuriy Shevchuk winner of the international competition
Oleh Lanovyy winner of the international competition
Vasyl Sadovskyj winner of the Ukrainian competition
Anastasiya Kornutyak winner of the international competition
Luydmyla Ostash winner of the international competition
Anna Nosova winner of the international competition
Roman Kovalchuk Honored Artist of Ukraine
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