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  Otello at The Kennedy Center


The Kennedy Center
2700 F Street, NW Washington

As a raging storm breaks on Cyprus, the governor Otello returns victorious from battle. But there is another storm brewing. Iago, Otello's ensign, launches a malicious scheme to lead his chief to believe his wife Desdemona is unfaithful. As Iago's manipulations decay Otello's trust in those he loves, the great hero will confront his most fatal enemy: his own jealousy. The Washington National Opera launches its new season with Verdi's monumental retelling of Shakespeare's masterpiece, Otello, last staged by WNO nearly 20 years ago. A powerhouse cast assembles at The Kennedy Center to perform some of opera's most demanding vocals, including Otello's vigorous role often dubbed the "Mount Everest" of the tenor repertory. Verdi's sweeping music offers a psychological medium to explore good and evil, from Desdemona's tender "Ave Maria" to Iago's villainous "I believe in a cruel God" manifesto. Behold the downward spiral of a celebrated leader - and see who tragically falls with him.

Thru - Nov 16, 2019

Box Office: 202-467-4600

The Kennedy Center Seating Charts

Nearby Restaurants

  Otello Reviews
  • Highly Recommended
  • Recommended
  • Somewhat Recommended
  • Not Recommended

BroadwayWorld - Highly Recommended

"...In a city full of dastardly characters, ranking one above the other can be tough. But for the next two week's there's no competition with George Gagnidze's Iago in Washington National Opera's (WNO) Otello. Giuseppe Verdi's penultimate masterpiece is brought to its intense glory in a production filled with magnificent performances and crackling with dramatic fervor."
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Benjamin Tomchik

DC Metro Theater Arts - Somewhat Recommended

"...While I can't fault the quality of the voices, I cannot find much to commend the show. This annoys me to the point of almost taking it personally. I had so much wanted to attend this show, that even though I had to be out of town on opening night, I arranged to review a successive performance. "
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Whitney Fishburn

DCTheatreScene - Recommended

"...The music of the title character makes the most varied demands upon the singer—requiring both the easy lyricism of a bel canto lover in the fleeting moments of tenderness with Desdemona and the stentorian tones of a warrior hero. The tenor Russell Thomas has steely, ringing high notes in abundance, and, while never actually losing control of his voice, he went about as far as he could in an effort to suggest the extent of Otello’s undoing at the hands of Iago. The approach was risky, bold, and largely successful. Thomas’s depiction of Otello’s emotional outbursts came across as uniformly intense, but, with more nuance and variety, he might have traced a more progressive journey from suspicion to madness."
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Richard Giarusso

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