Tito Manlio

Synopsis

Wednesday, 17 Oktober 2012
7 pm

  1. 17.10.2012
  2. 7:00 p.m.

At Christmas in 1718 the imperial governor of Mantua, Philip of Hesse-Darmstadt, announced his forthcoming marriage. His maestro di cappella, Antonio Vivaldi, hastily had to come up with a suitable work to mark the
celebrations. Vivaldi is said to have completed his celebratory opera Tito Manlio in only five days. Although the wedding never took place, the premiere of the opera at the Teatro Arciducale in Mantua was a success for
Vivaldi.
The plot is based on a reported incident in the history of Rome from the third century BC. The consul Titus Manlius had his own son sentenced to death and executed for refusing to obey an order during a battle against
the Latins.
In Vivaldi’s opera, Tito Manlio also defends Rome against attacks from the surrounding area. Although the Latins are allowed to serve in the Roman legions they are excluded from any decision-making. However, the lines
that separate the two camps are unclear. Even the consul’s own children have romantic liaisons with members of the enemy. His son Manlius is betrothed to a Latin woman. In breach of the senate’s orders, Manlius the Younger kills an enemy commander. The furious consul abides by the letter of the law and condemns his son to execution by axe…