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Omaha Magazine

La Traviata: The Fallen Woman Rises to the Opera Omaha Stage

Feb 19, 2024 11:19AM ● By Claudia Moomey

Opera Omaha has proven once again their ability to produce breathtaking masterpieces. La traviata (translated to “the fallen woman” in English), Giuseppe Verdi’s most famous work, was executed beautifully by Omaha’s professional opera company. This tragic story of love and heartbreak is a classic one, yet stands out amongst all the romances that stereotype the genre.

Soprano Adriana Chuchman leads this talented cast of characters as Violetta Valéry, the titular “fallen woman” of the story. Chuchman’s gorgeous vocals blend with those of Brian Vu’s (Alfredo Germont) tenor, creating soaring duets that could make even the iciest heart melt. Baritone Hyung Yun enters as Giorgio Germont to introduce the main wrench in the plot, adding a rich timbre to the cast. Minor characters and ensemble members complete this beautiful amalgamation of voices that stands against a backdrop of scene-appropriate color and well-placed sets.

The recurring waltzes, uncommon in the genre in Verdi’s time, climax with the performance of the “travelers from afar.” In Flora’s party scene, flooded with reds and purples, the story of a matador is conveyed by a graceful ballerina in traditional bullfighting dress, adding an interesting spice to the narrative and choreography.

Opera Omaha’s incredible symphony orchestra flawlessly follows Verdi’s musical construction and brings the show to life with swelling timpani and strings that hold the breath of the audience in suspense, in joy, and in sorrow.

Chuchman skillfully and dramatically performs Violetta’s last lines of libretto, which have haunted audiences’ consciousness for centuries, and will continue to do so as long as Verdi’s opus is performed. 

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