Opera in four acts
“Aida” was commission of the Cairo Theater for the inauguration of the Suez Canal. The opera turned to be one of the greatest creations of Verdi`s great mind. Having this “exotic” libretto in his hands Verdi, finally, discovers “his own” themes, feelings and passions: premeditated tragism, terms, situations that have no way out, the love that beats the death. . . The music richness of Aida results from the correlation between several different musical standpoints as well the perfect ratio between them: the expressivepsychological line of the main heroes, the obscure and steady world of the clergymen, the luxurious triumphal marching mass scenes, the exotic world of the Orient with its colors that are naturally blended into the opera dramaturgy and language of music. P. I. Tchaikovsky had written once: “The genius of the old man Verdi in Aida and Othello had opened new frontiers for the Italian musicians…”
Memphis and Thebes, Egypt in ancient times. Aida, Ethiopian slave of the Egyptian princess Amneris, loves Radames – chosen to be the commanding officer in the battle against Ethiopia. Amneris, also in love with Radames, pretending good feelings toward her slave discovers the secret of Aida`s love. Radames has defeated the Ethiopians and triumphantly comes back home. He is rewarded the hand of the princes Amneris. Amonasro, Aida`s father and Ethiopian king, is among the prisoners.
Amonasro, having discovered the love between his daughter and Radames, orders her to ask Radames which route the revolting Ethiopians to ambush them. Amneris reveals the Radames unintended betrayal. Ramfis sentences him to be buried alive in a tomb. Aida manages to sneak inside the tomb in order to be with him to the last.