This summer saw Stephen Costello star as the Duke in Verdi’s Rigoletto, in his debut at Austria’s Bregenz Festival (through August 17). Helmed by film and stage director and designer Philipp Stölzl, the production has inspired glowing praise, not least for the tenor’s performance. According to Die Deutsche Bühne, “With his sure high notes and charismatic tenor, Stephen Costello gives this unscrupulous womanizer the requisite swagger.” He “brilliantly mastered the grueling role,” agreed Der Standard. As the Wiener Zeitung writes, “Costello is a virile and vocally dashing Duke, whose singing effortlessly finds its way into women’s hearts.”
Also featuring Vladimir Stoyanov, Melissa Petit, Miklos Sebestyen, Katrin Wundsam, the Prague Philharmonic Choir, and the Vienna Symphony under the leadership of Enrique Mazzola, the production was filmed for broadcast on Germany’s 3SAT television station on August 10, and for subsequent DVD release today, on August 16; copies can be ordered here.