A scene from the Metropolitan Opera's 1988 production of Turandot.

A scene from the Metropolitan Opera's 1988 production of Turandot.

Met Opera production of Puccini’s ‘Turandot’ showing at Creston library

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Turandot will be shown show at Creston Valley Public Library at 7 p.m. Feb. 22.

The story originated with the 12th century Persian poet, Nizami. The history that led to the operatic production is complex and fascinating.

The theme of the poem was rewritten by playwrights, and Fredrick Schiller’s version interested Giacomo Puccini. After the libretto was written, Puccini went to work on the music. However, he was not satisfied with the final duet and became ill while the work was still in progress. Puccini died in 1924 before completing the opera. A conclusion was written in 1926 by Italian composer Franco Alfano.

The role of Turandot is sung by Eva Marton and the incomparable Placido Domingo performs as Calaf. His father is the vanquished King of Tartary (Paul Plishka), whose servant is Liu, sung by Leona Mitchell.

One opera connoisseur credits the success of this Met Opera production to Placido Domingo and berates Eva Marton. Another connoisseur berates Domingo and compliments Marton. In both cases, the negative comments are intermingled with compliments.

The opera consists of three acts and the setting is China. Subtitles will accompany Italian singing.

—BY JULIE EWASHEN