I went to see L’elisir d’amore at the invitation of a friend who said that she loved it. Composed by Gaetano Donizetti and first performed in 1832 in Milan, where it enjoyed immediate success, it is the story of a young village boy, Nemorino, in love with Adina, the wealthy farm owner. While she is infatuated with the dashing Sergeant Belcore, Nemorino comes across the quack Dulcamara selling an ‘elixir of love’, which he loses no time in buying and testing out.
The opera is lighthearted and lots of fun, with a sunny Italian setting and amusing comedic moments. The leads, Roberto Alagna and Aleksandra Kurzak, were very good although I did think Alagna was a bit too old for the role of a lovesick young man. If you think opera is always tragic and serious, this will disabuse you of that notion.