The Frederick theater crew went to the Ellie Caulkins Opera house to watch the amazing performance of Rigoletto.

The Frederick theater department had the opportunity to travel to the Ellie Caulkins Opera House, to see a world-renowned opera show called Rigoletto. The theater department met on November 10 in the school auditorium, where Mr.Coon, the teacher who made this trip possible, helped explain what we were about to go see. 

He started by explaining the Opera House and what it will look like. With screens on the front of chairs that translate what the actors were singing since the show was sung in Italian, and how it has many different levels to watch from. He then went on to say how there will be other schools joining us ranging from elementary to high school. 


After he explained what to expect when we showed up in Denver, he explained the show to us. Rigoletto is a show that has three acts, and follows the story of a hunchback Jester by the name of Rigoletto who was cursed by the Count Monterone to have the same thing happen to him.


In Act one the scene is set at the playboy Duke of Mantua’s living quarters where he is throwing a huge party. Rigoletto is mocking the other husbands and fathers of the women that the Duke has seduced and taken advantage of. Count Monterone confronts the Duke about using his daughter and doing these horrible things to her in front of his whole court. Rigoletto, as he did to the other fathers, made fun of the Count and humiliated him in front of the court, because of his loyalty to the Duke. The Count was hurt and embarrassed so he cursed the Duke and Rigoletto.


Rigoletto has a daughter (Gilda) that he kept hidden away from the world. He only let her leave the house to go to church and she had to wear a disguise. No one knew he had a daughter, but the curse Count Monterone put on him was that he would feel the same things he did and his daughter would get seduced and used just like his. Everyone laughed and made mockery towards the Count because they all thought he was crazy since Rigoletto didn’t have a daughter, but Rigoletto had a wave of fear wash over him when the Count cursed him. 


He rushed home to his daughter, but on his way he ran into an assassin named Sparafucile, and pondered his encounter with him for a while even after they had parted ways. He went inside to see his beloved daughter Gilda, but he felt out of place and worried that he had already failed as a father. Which he has. Gilda had seen the Duke in church and instantly fell in love, a little like love at first sight. 


Rigoletto leaves his daughter in despair, and Guilda secretly meets the Duke at her home. They declare their love for each other and she thinks he is a poor student named Gualtier Malde. On the way home, still in despair, he runs into a group of courtiers who ask for his help in kidnapping the Countess Ceprano. Rigoletto agrees and joins them with a blind fold over his eyes preventing him from seeing that he is aiding in the kidnapping of his own daughter. The courtiers think the Guilda is Rigoletto’s mistress instead of daughter and are baffled when they find out she is his daughter. 


Next is act two, this is where the Duke is frantic because he finds out his beloved Guilda is missing and he is worried. He is pacing in his living quarters when the courtiers show up all giddy with Guilda and tell the Duke about their late night adventures. The Duke is happy to have Guilda and realizes and thinks that she is Rigoletto’s mistress. 


Rigoletto enters the Duke’s home angry and worries he demands for her return from courtiers, but is refrained from going to the Duke’s room where he is holding Guilda, and doing other unwanted activities. After the Duke is done with her Guilda appears to her father bald dressed and in distress where they are left alone together to talk about what happened and hold each other. Guilda expresses her love for the Duke and pleads for her father to take mercy on the Duke.


The last act is act three. In act three it opens on a stormy night where Rigoletto and Guilda are outside of the assassin Sparafucile’s house. They hear the Duke inside with Sparafucile’s gorgeous sister Maddalena, where they were doing some not so PG things. Guild is hurt and distraught with the Dukes unfaithfulness even though her father warned her, but her love for him doesn’t change. 


Rigoletto has had enough and tells Guilda that his revenge on the Duke will be swift. He tells Guilda to leave the city and dress like a little boy to disguise herself. After Guilda is gone Rigoletto meets with Sparafucile making a deal with him to murder the Duke and bring him in a sac to him later that night. He will pay him 20 dollars. 10 in the beginning and then the rest after he brings Rigoletto the Duke’s body. 


While the plan is being discussed Maddalena overhears and can’t bear the thought of the oh so handsome Duke to die, so she convinces Sparafucile of an alternative plan. The plan was the next person to come to the house would be killed instead. 


Guilda is still unable to not love the Duke so she appears back at the house still dressed as the little boy. She overhears the arrangement Sparafucile and Maddalena had made and prepares herself to sacrifice herself for the Duke’s life. 


After the show the actors and other students that were at the opera were able to have a talk back, where they asked questions to the actors and other people who helped the plan happen and they would be answered.