Pagliacci (1936)

Genres - Musical  |   Sub-Genres - Film-Opera  |   Run Time - 95 min.  |   Countries - UK  |  
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This beautifully rendered cinemadaptation of Pagliacci is sung in English, with the Leoncavallo music newly arranged by Hans Eisler. The noted counter tenor Richard Tauber is Signor Canio, head of a comic-opera troupe touring the Italian provinces. On stage Canio, dressed as a clown, is expected to laugh everyone's troubles away: offstage, he is tormented with the knowledge that his beautiful young wife (Steffi Duna) is in love with handsome soldier Silvio (Arthur Margetson). These real-life travails eventually spill over onto the stage, with tragic consequences. The film's high point, of course, is Richard Tauber's plaintive rendition of the famous aria "Veste la Giubba". Unlike so many other filmed operas, Pagliacci is thoroughly cinematic, with carefully chosen camera angles and attractively designed compositions.



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