Get local news delivered straight to your phone
Support City Paper!
Giuseppe Verdi’s last opera was a parting shot at critics who considered the Italian composer, best known for adapting such downers as Macbeth and Othello, too serious to do comedy. Already in his late 70s, Verdi channeled his inner dirty old man to write Falstaff, an opéra bouffe about the overweight, past-his-prime knight first seen in Shakespeare’s Henry IV and The Merry Wives of Windsor. Baritone Alan Opie stars as the 15th-century Leisure Suit Larry who unsuccessfully attempts to seduce two married women before drunkenly declaring “all the world is a joke.” The real Falstaff had a less comical end: John Oldcastle, the inspiration for Shakespeare’s character, led a failed insurrection against King Henry V before he was captured and roasted alive. THE PERFORMANCE BEGINS AT 2 P.M. AT THE KENNEDY CENTER’S OPERA HOUSE, 2700 F ST. NW. $25–$275. (800) 444-1324. —Mike Paarlberg