One of the lesser known works by Giuseppe Verdi, “Simon Boccanegra” is regarded by most opera lovers as one of his finest. The production from the Vienna State Opera is “visually alert, musically sensitive and disturbingly coherent”. The staging is directed by one of the giants of the European theatre, Peter Stein. His fondness for atmospherically dense spaces in which the characters can fully develop is particularly well brought out in his Vienna production, not least because he had at his disposal two remarkable singing actors for the principal male roles,Thomas Hampson and Ferruccio Furlanetto. The Vienna State Opera’s “Simon Boccancgra” was a great event in the houses history, and the beauties of this unique work blossom under Daniele Gatti’s care.