Act III, "The Nile Scene"

AIDA Act III "The Nile Scene" In 1871, Guiseppe Verdi gave a new work to the world that would become synonymous with Grand Opera: "AIDA." It was an instantaneous success, and remains so to this day! The third act of the opera takes place on the banks of the Nile. Aida steps from the shadows into the moonlight to await her secret meeting with her beloved Rhadames, leader of the Egyptian armies. Her thoughts wander to the happy days in her homeland where she was a Royal Princess. Now, a captive of the Egyptians and a slave to the Princess Amneris, she longs for her homeland in the poignant aria: "O, Patria mia."
He, like Aida, has managed to keep his Royal identity a secret. But Amonasro accuses Aida of wavering loyalties and insists she use Rhadames to plot their escape. Tearfully Aida consents, and as Rhadames approaches Amonasro withdraws to watch and listen. Aida begs Rhadames to flee with her, and in the passion of the moment Rhadames reveals the one safe path they might take. Amonasro triumphantly steps from his hiding place and reveals his true identity to the startled Rhadames, and urges him to escape with them. A new voice is then heard; the voice of Princess Amneris. She has overheard the plot and denounces Rhadames as a traitor while Aida and Amonasro escape into the darkness.

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