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Seattle Opera.

Mary Stuart

Feb. 27-Mar. 12, 2016

Overview

The April 3, 2021 broadcast of this production on 98.1 KING FM was originally recorded on March 5, 2016. It features Joyce El-Khoury as Mary Stuart and Mary Elizabeth Williams as Elizabeth. Full cast list is available below.

By Gaetano Donizetti

HISTORIC CONFRONTATION WITH SEARING EMOTIONS. Two icons of British royalty, Queen Elizabeth I and Mary, Queen of Scots, clash in a powerful story of jealousy, pity, doubt, menace, exaltation, and remorse. Extravagant period costumes and virtuosic bel canto singing heighten the many moods of this haunting, unforgettable battle of wills. Does Elizabeth retain her nobility and show clemency to her rival? Or will spite and ambition drive her to seal Mary’s grisly fate? Join us at the palace and see!


In Italian with English subtitles |
 at McCaw Hall 
Approximate Running Time: 2 hours, 30 minutes with 1 intermission
Evenings at 7:30 PM. Sunday matinee at 2:00 PM.

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Synopsis

England, 1587

ACT I

Westminster Palace.
Queen Elizabeth I is toying with a marriage proposal from a French prince when her court asks what she intends to do about her cousin Mary Stuart, former Queen of France and then of Scotland, who has been condemned to death for conspiring against Elizabeth. Talbot, who hosted Mary Stuart during the first part of her long house arrest in England, encourages Elizabeth to be lenient, but Elizabeth’s trusted advisor Cecil fears that Mary is a threat to Elizabeth’s throne. Talbot then asks Leicester, Elizabeth’s favorite, to intercede on behalf of Mary, whom Talbot and Leicester both love. In the duet “Era d’amor l’immagine,” Leicester begs Elizabeth to meet Mary face to face. Reluctantly, she agrees.

Fotheringhay Castle.
Accompanied by her attendant, Hannah, Mary enjoys the park of the castle where she is imprisoned and recalls her happy childhood in France (aria: “O nube che lieve”). Leicester