I've been an opera chorister for four years now, performing in seven operas, four of them by Verdi: Rigoletto, Aida, Macbeth, and Un Ballo in Maschera. Very romantic as well as tragic; who would have thought that Verdi would end his composing career with such a brilliant comedy! I listened to the recording first (it has the same cast as this video), and actually found myself laughing at the sophisticated wit of composer, conducter and singers alike. Note that the conducter overlooked the entire production (and I mean entire, from staging to whatever); and he was making a return after a long hiatus from opera! Renato Bruson is ideal as Falstaff: prideful, bumbling, and charming to boot. The lovely leading ladies sparkle with intelligence and womanly wiles, the men with suspicion (except for the lead tenor, amourous to the end). This filmed performance is also emotional in its value, as the late, gifted mezzo Lucia Valentini-Terrani glows as Dame Quickly. What also impresses me about this opera is that moments in the score do sound English! (This is, after all, an adaption of Shakespear's Merry Wives of Windsor.) A treat from beginning to end, for the eyes, ears, and spirit. As Falstaff says, "Va, vecchio John (Go on, old John)!"