Monday, 10 January 2011

Egyptian revival

Sophia Loren as Aida

Aida, the 1953 Italian film adaptation of Verdi's opera directed by Clemente Fracassi starred Sophia Loren in the title role. Her vocals were provided by the great lyric soprano Renata Tebaldi. Lois Maxwell (later known for her role as Miss Moneypenny in the Bond films) appeared opposite Loren in the role of Amneris, with her vocals provided by mezzo-soprano Ebe Stignani. 

Aida opening sequence

O patria mia aria from Act III

Aida is torn between her loyalty to her country and her love for Radames, longing for her homeland and afraid that she may never see it again.

Aida, closing sequence

Sentenced to death for treason,  Radames (played by Luciano Della Marra and sung by Giuseppe Campora) has been entombed alive in the Temple of Vulcan's vault. Thinking that he is alone, he hears a sigh and then he sees her. Aida has hidden herself in the vault to die with him. They accept their fate and bid farewell to earthly sorrows. Above, in the Temple of Vulcan, Amneris prays to the goddess Ftha. Below, in the vault, Aida dies in Radames' arms.

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