Passion and jealousy.
The original double-feature.

Set in rural Italy, these two classic one-act works tell stories of the most operatic of emotions. In Cavalleria Rusticana (“Rustic Chivalry”), a woman abandoned by her lover seeks revenge – and gets it. In Pagliacci (“The Clowns”), a traveling theatre troupe is torn apart by infidelity, jealousy, and ultimately murder.

Last seen in Madison over 30 years ago, this double-bill features everything you want in an opera, with passionate music, intense emotions, and powerful drama.

Cavalleria Rusticana & Pagliacci
Friday, November 2 at 8pm
Sunday, November 4 at 2:30pm
Overture Hall
Sung in Italian with projected English translations

Run time: 2 hours 45 minutes, including one intermission

Cavalleria Rusticana
Music by Pietro Mascagni
Libretto by Giovanni Targioni-Tozzetti and Guido Menasci

Premiered: 17 May 1890, Teatro Costanzi, Rome
Previously at MO: 1986, 1973

Music by Ruggero Leoncavallo
Libretto by the composer

Premiered 21 May 1892, Teatro dal Verme, Milan
Previously at MO: 1986


Michelle Johnson

Madison Opera Debut
Recently: Madame Lidoine, Dialogues of the Carmlites; Aida, Aida; Elisabeth de Valois, Don Carlos (Sarasota Opera); Leonora, Il Trovatore (Hawaii Opera Theatre); Minnie, La fanciulla del West 

Talise Trevigne

Madison Opera Debut
Recently: Mrs. Johannes Zegner, Proving Up (Opera Omaha); Micaëla, Carmen (Hawaii Opera Theatre); Bess, Porgy and Bess (Glimmerglass Festival); Leïla, The Pearl Fishers (North Carolina Opera); Clara, It’s a Wonderful Life (Houston Grand Opera)

Scott Piper
Turridu / Canio

Madison Opera Debut: Alfredo, La Traviata (1999)
Recently with MO: Cavaradossi, Tosca (2013); Opera in the Park 2004; Pinkerton, Madama Butterfly (2001);Rodolfo, La Bohéme (1999)
Recently: Canio, Pagliacci (Utah Opera); Otello, Otello (Dayton Opera, Heissisches Staatstheater Wiesbaden, Oper Köln)

Michael Mayes
Alfio / Tonio

Madison Opera Debut: Duke of Verona, Romeo and Juliet (2004)
Recently with MO: Joseph De Rocher, Dead Man Walking
Recently: Starbuck, Moby-Dick (Pittsburgh Opera); Joseph DeRocher, Dead Man Walking (Teatro Real de Madrid, Washington National Opera, New Orleans Opera); Beck Weathers, Everest (Lyric Opera of Kansas City); Escamillo, Carmen (Central City Opera); Everyman Soldier, Soldier Songs (Des Moines Metro Opera)
Upcoming: Joseph DeRocher, Dead Man Walking (Atlanta Opera); Count di Luna Il Trovatore (Central City Opera, Seattle Opera); Sweeney Todd, Sweeney Todd (Atlanta Opera)

Benjamin Taylor

Madison Opera Debut
Recently: Sciarrone, Tosca; Brian, The Long Walk; Captain Gardiner, Moby-Dick (Pittsburgh Opera); Fiorello, The Barber of Seville; Cowardly Giant, Shalimar the Clown; Yamadori, Madam Butterfly (Opera Theatre of Saint Louis); Marcello, La Bohéme (Crested Butte Festival)

Robert Goderich

Madison Opera Debut: Amelia’s Servant, A Masked Ball (2012)
Recently with MO: 1st Priest / Armored Man, The Magic Flute (2017); Spalanzani, The Tales of Hoffmann; Pirelli, Sweeney Todd; Peasant, The Daughter of the Regiment
Recently: Albin, La Cage Aux Folles (Music Theatre of Madison); Pirelli cvr., Sweeney Todd, (San Francisco Opera); Guys and Dolls, The Fantasticks, Les Miserables, She Loves Me, Great American Songbook (Four Seasons Theatre)

Daniella Wright
Mamma Lucia

Madison Opera Debut
Recently: Paula Deen, Krispy Kremes and Butter Queens (Detroit Institute of Arts, Opera MODO); Madeline, Three Decembers; Mrs. Todd, The Old Maid and the Theif; Madame Flora, The Medium; Juno, Semele (Opera MODO)

Kirsten Larson

Madison Opera Studio Artist
Madison Opera Debut
Cousin Hebe, H.M.S. Pinafore (Madison Savoyards); Fox, The Cunning Little Vixen; Meg Page, Falstaff; Ilona Ritter, She Loves Me; Baba the Turk, The Rake’s Progress (Louisiana State University); Cherubino, The Marriage of Figaro (Louisiana State University, UW-Madison); Second Lady, The Magic Flute (UW-Madison); Celeste #1, Sunday in the Park with George; Carrie Pipperidge, Carousel (Middleton Players Theatre)

Upcoming: Mrs. Segstrom, A Little Night Music; Water Sprite, Rusalka (Madison Opera)

Joseph Mechavich

Madison Opera Debut: Don Giovanni (2013)
Recently with MO: Opera in the Park 2018 & 2016
Recently: The Magic Flute, Dead Man Walking, Ariadne auf Naxos (Kentucky Opera); Out of Darkness (Atlanta Opera); Florencia en el Amazonas (San Diego Opera, Arizona Opera); Moby-Dick (Utah Opera); Turandot (Calgary Opera)

Kristine McIntyre
Stage Director

Madison Opera Debut: Così fan tutte (2009)
Recently with MO: Florencia en el Amazonas, The Tales of Hoffmann, Dead Man Walking, A Masked Ball
Recently: The Place Where You Started (Art Share L.A.); Moby-Dick (Pittsburgh Opera, Utah Opera); Dead Man Walking (Lyric Opera of Kansas City); Billy Budd, As One, Manon (Des Moines Metro Opera); Don Giovanni (Utah Opera); The Tender Land (Michigan Opera Theater)
Upcoming: Flight (Des Moines Metro Opera); La Rondine (Arezzo Opera Festival);  Don Giovanni (Palm Beach Opera); Moby-Dick (Chicago Opera Theater, Opera San Jose, Gran Teatre del Licieu)


  • Pleasant T. Rowland Foundation
  • Bert & Diane Adams
  • Lau & Bea Christensen Charitable Foundation
  • Chun Lin
  • Patricia & Stephen Lucas
  • Thomas Terry
  • Helen Winike