Entranced by a heartbreakingly magical Verdi

[Photo: Marty Sohl / The Metropolitan Opera]
By Marion Lignana Rosenberg [Newsday, 27 September 2005]

Sir Isaiah Berlin deemed Verdi the last of the great “naive” composers: simple, un-self-conscious, concealed by his work. There is truth to Sir Isaiah’s claim, but it withers before the bittersweet fancy of “Falstaff” (1893), crafted by the 79-year-old Verdi as his farewell to the stage.