Arizona Opera (2008)

In its 2008-09 season opener, Arizona Opera installed director David Gately to infuse a rougher edge to Verdi’s sordid tale of powerful men scorning vulnerable women and vulnerable women falling helplessly for the bait.

Gately sees “Rigoletto” in classic Verdian shades — with all its rough edges and cruelty in public view. Timid directors might water down the abduction of Rigoletto’s daughter Gilda (stunningly sung by soprano Mary Wilson) as a frat-boy prank. Gately’s Duke (Garrett Sorenson in his company debut), the recipient of the kidnapping, is just brutal enough that we realize he has full intentions of having his way with the young girl.

— Arizona Daily Starre