Living room of the Parisian courtesan Violetta Valerie. For the first time since her illness, she has invited guests. Violetta’s old acquaintance, Gaston, introduces her to Alfred Germont, who recently came to Paris. Left alone, Alfred declares his love for Violetta. But she is well aware that the relationship between a courtesan and an aristocrat will not bring happiness: secular society never recognizes their marriage. But Violetta does not reveal her thoughts to Alfred, so as not to upset him. She gives the fan a camellia as a token of affection. Guests disperse. Violetta is embarrassed by Alfred’s whimsy, but convinces herself that true love is not for her.
Suburbs of Paris. Three months have passed since the lovers left the city. From a conversation with the maid, Alfred accidentally learns that Violetta is secretly selling her property, trying to avoid financial hardship. The man goes to Paris to settle financial affairs. In his absence, Alfred’s father, Georges Germont, comes to Violetta and accuses him of ruining and disgracing his son. She shows papers about the sale of her wealth. The old aristocrat is shocked by such devotion and still asks to break the unequal relationship. The woman knows that she is terminally ill and therefore agrees. Violetta writes her last letter to her lover. Alfred returns and finds her extremely excited. The woman assures him of her love, but says goodbye and leaves. Alfred is brought a letter in which Violetta announces the severance of their relationship. Alfred initially thinks that she left him because of money, but from what she has learned she learns that Violetta has decided to choose her former way of life. Georges Germont appears and asks his son to return to his family. Alfred finds an invitation to the ball from Flora Bervois, Violetta’s friend. He decides to go there to avenge his beloved.
Masquerade ball at Flora. Violetta appears accompanied by Baron Dufol. Later comes Alfred. He is incredibly lucky in playing cards. He is looking for quarrels with the baron. Violetta is afraid of a duel and begs her lover to leave. The young man agrees, but only with her. Violetta refuses. Then Alfred publicly embarrasses her, throwing the money won at his feet. Georges Germont reproaches his son for the act, and the baron calls the jealous man to a duel.
Violetta is seriously ill. The doctor tries to encourage her, but recovery is impossible. The sounds of the Paris Carnival are heard from the open window. Violetta, saying goodbye to life, asks the maid to give all the money to the poor and rereads the lines from Georges Germont’s letter. He writes that during the duel Alfred wounded the baron, so he had to go abroad. He will soon return to apologize to Violetta, because George, as promised, revealed to his son the secret of her self-sacrifice. Alfred is coming. Now that happiness is so close, Violetta wants to live, but the forces leave her. Georges Germont, who has just appeared, sincerely repents. But fate does not change: Violetta dies, leaving her portrait in memory of her lover.
Opera performed with two intervals
Libretto by Francesco Piave based on Alexandre Dumasfils' novel «The Lady with the Camellias»
The premiere took place on November 9-10, 2019
Фото – Дмитро Скворцов, Юрій Литвиненко