Aci, Galatea e Polifemo

Georg Friedrich Händel


Libretto by Nicola Giuvo


George Frideric Handel was 23 when he wrote Aci, Galatea e Polifemo in Naples in 1708. Written as a concert entertainment for a wedding among the nobility, the serenata tells the love story of the nymph Galatea and the shepherd Acis which comes to an end when Acis is brutally murdered by the Cyclops Polyphemus. To today’s listeners, this work, along with the oratorio Il trionfo del tempo e del disinganno written a year earlier, feels like a glimpse over the young composer’s shoulder as he conducts his experiments: with three singers and in only 90 minutes Handel unfolds a breadth of expressive forms and combinations of instruments almost completely absent from his later works. René Jacobs, who has been tirelessly unearthing Baroque masterpieces for years and is a regular guest at the MusikTheater an der Wien, will conduct Handel’s serenata as a drama of emotions.


Concert performance in Italian with German surtitles


Introduction to the work 30 minutes before curtain-up