Agrippina, by George Frideric Handel
I Claudius, with a TwistEnjoy the young Handel at his most light-hearted, tuneful, and exuberant. If you saw the TV series I Claudius, think of Claudius in old age: He was a wise emperor who had awful taste in women. Agrippina marries Claudius with the goal of putting her mad son Nero on the throne. Then Handel’s version of the story departs from historical accuracy and turns into a madcap comedy. Watch the depraved Poppea contrive to meet three lovers in succession: Claudius, Nero, and Ottone (the latter earlier saved Claudius’ life!) But it is Agrippina’s clever schemes that drive the twists and turns of the story. Come to the lecture to see how it all turns out.
- Alison Faith Levy
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