Tosca | MAMT
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Giacomo Puccini’s opera Tosca is based on the drama of the same name by Victorien Sardou. The composer saw her production in Milan, was immediately carried away by the plot and asked his publisher Giulio Ricordi to get the author’s consent to use the composition as the basis for the libretto. At the same time, two more eminent Italian composers, Giuseppe Verdi and Alberto Franchetti, considered Sardu’s play as a possible opera plot. Thanks to the efforts of Ricordi, the right to create the opera went to Puccini. In 1900, the premiere took place at the Teatro Constanzi in Rome.

The originality of the opera lies in its close connection with historical events. The love drama unfolds against the backdrop of the liberation struggle of supporters of the Roman Republic against the troops of the Kingdom of Naples that occupied the city. The real episode mentioned in the opera is the Battle of Marengo, in which Napoleon’s troops defeated the Austrians and their allies.

Sardou wrote the role of Tosca with Sarah Bernhardt in mind, and the tradition of performing the title role by outstanding singers passed to the opera stage. Staging by Lyudmila Naletova, going on the stage of the Musical Theater. K.S. Stanislavsky and Vl.I. Nemirovich-Danchenko, is centered around the three main characters of the opera – the singer Floria Tosca, the artist Mario Cavaradossi and the chief of the secret police of Rome, Baron Scarpia. These parts are performed by the leading soloists of the theatre’s opera troupe.

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Running Time
2 hours 50 minutes with two intermissions
Premiere at the SND Music Theatre
January 30 2004
Performed in

Creative Team

Music Director
Stage Director
Set and Costume Designer
Lighting Designer
Principal Chorus Master



In the church of St. Andrea della Valle, the fugitive Angelotti takes refuge in a private chapel. The painter Cavaradossi returns to the canvas he is
painting, a picture of Mary Magdalene, influenced by the features of his beloved Tosca and by a woman he has often seen in the church. The
sacristan complains of the trouble Cavaradossi gives him. As he leaves, Angelotti emerges from hiding, explaining that he has escaped from imprisonment in the Castel Sant’Angelo. The voice of Tosca is heard and Angelotti hides again. Tosca is jealous of what she thinks may have been an assignation with another woman but agrees to meet her lover after her evening performance. The church fills for a celebration of a supposed victory over Napoleon and Baron Scarpia and his agents seek for signs of Angelotti, suspicion falling on Cavaradossi as a possible accomplice. Scarpia succeeds now in arousing further jealousy in Tosca, who has returned, showing her a fan found in the chapel. Scarpia orders his men to follow Tosca, when she leaves.


In Scarpia’s apartment the sound is heard of an entertainment being given below for Queen Caroline, dancing and a performance by Tosca. Cavaradossi has been arrested and is interrogated and, when Tosca comes in, tortured in the next room, to elicit information from her. She betrays
Angelotti’s hiding-place at the well in the garden of Cavaradossi’s villa. The painter is to be shot at dawn, but can be saved if Tosca will give in to Scarpia’s demands on her. She pretends to agree and when he has signed a safe-conduct she kills him.


At Castel Sant’Angelo Cavaradossi prepares for death. Tosca is brought in and explains how there is to be a mock-execution, after which they can
escape together. But Scarpia’s orders did not countermand the execution and Cavaradossi is shot. When Tosca realises that he is dead, she kills herself.

Previous performances

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