Based on a drama by Giovanni Verga, "Cavalleria Rusticana" relates the lives and passions of simple Sicilian peasants. It was the first opera of the "verismo", or realist, school. Turiddu has long been one of Plácido Domingo's finest roles, infused with passion and musical intensity. Franco Zeffirelli has masterminded a brilliantly naturalistic filming of this opera, shooting it on location in a small Sicilian town. The Russian mezzo-soprano Elena Obraztsova
is a moving Santuzza, totally convincing inher passionate dejection. Together with the other veristic masterpiece, Leoncavallo's "Pagliacci", "Cavalleria" forms the most popular double-bill in the operatic repertory.