Luisa Miller, Opera Holland Park

The heroine Luisa and “Carlo” fall in love but Carlo is really Rodolfo, the son of the powerful count Walter. In jealousy Wurma, the counts servant, revels the true identity of Carlo to Luisa’s father Miller.
When Walter finds out of son’s plans of marrying Luisa he feels he needs to intervene. Not only is Luisa just a farmers daughter, Walter also has plans for Rudolfo to marry the now wealthy duchess Frederica who has loved Rudolfo since he was a little boy.
The scene is set for a tragedy of love and jealousy. A tragedy that comes true.
(Spoiler below but in true Opera fashion, it’s good to be aware of the whole story so that you can appreciate the music and the singing)
Rudolfo overhears Luisa denouncing her love for him and is in despair. He doesn’t know that Luisa wasn’t telling the truth, she was only trying to save her father that had been put into prison. Rudolfo is desperate and decides to poison both Luisa and himself. Only after Luisa finds out they are both beyond saving is she able to once again proclaim her love for him.
The wardrobe was very bizarre; if not ugly. It was a modernised, 80s wardrobe. Think yellow cardigans and light blue skirts for the girls, big shoulder suits and skinny ties for the men. This in turn did not work with very well with the story. Terms like castle, villagers, count, stables and servants.
One of the highlights for me was the fact that the orchestra was on the same level as you. Playing at a mere arms length away. Normally they would be tucked away somewhere below the stage but at Opera Holland Park you can watch them every moment.