Tragedia lirica in 4 acts Composer: Antonio Cagnoni Libretto: Antonio Ghislanzoni, after Shakespeare Composed c. 1880-1885. First performed: Martina Franca, 19 July 2009, conducted by Massimiliano Caldi Dossier King Lear - where Edgar loves Cordelia, Edmund barely exists, the dramatist has little feeling for Shakespeare, and the composer lacks imagination? "Fie, fie, fie! pah, pah!" CHARACTERS … Continue reading 68. Re Lear (Antonio Cagnoni)
CATERINA CORNARO Opera seria in a prologue and two acts By Gaetano Donizetti Libretto: Giacomo Saccherò First performed: Teatro San Carlo, Naples, 12 January 1844 Dossier Great minds think alike; my friend Phil posted about this opera on his blog this morning. "I am waiting with anxiety the news of the fiasco of Caterina Cornaro at Naples," Donizetti … Continue reading 65. Caterina Cornaro (Gaetano Donizetti)
Halévy's disappearance, as I said in my review of La reine de Chypre, is astonishing. In his day, the Jewish musician was seen as the leader of the French school – France’s greatest opera composer from the 1830s to the 1850s. He was, like his fellow Jew Meyerbeer, a master of both grand opera and opéra comique, … Continue reading More by Halévy?
Opéra in 5 acts By Fromental Halévy Libretto: Henri de Saint-Georges First performed: Théâtre de l’Opéra (salle Le Peletier), Paris, 22 December 1841, conducted by François-Antoine Habeneck Dossier The Palazzetto Bru Zane recently published the world première recording of an opera admired by Berlioz and Wagner: a tale of politics, thwarted love, and chivalry in the fifteenth century. … Continue reading 64. La reine de Chypre (Fromental Halévy)
OLYMPIE Tragédie lyrique en 3 actes Composer: Gaspare Spontini Libretto : MM. Michel Dieulafoy, Eugène Briffaut, after Voltaire’s play (1761) First performed : Théâtre de l’Opéra, Paris, 22 December 1819, conducted by Rudolphe Kreutzer. Revised Berlin, May 1821. Dossier The failure of Spontini's opera about the death of Alexander the Great left the composer vowing never to … Continue reading 62. Olympie (Gaspare Spontini)
FERNAND CORTEZ, OU LA CONQUÊTE DE MÉXIQUE Tragédie lyrique in 3 acts Composer: Gaspare Spontini Libretto: Étienne de Jouy and Joseph-Alphonse Esménard, after Alexis Piron’s play First performed: Opéra de Paris [Académie Impériale de Musique] (salle Montansier), 28 November 1809, conducted by Jean-Baptiste Rey Dossier My friend Phil has just reviewed this work on his Opera … Continue reading 61. Fernand Cortez (Gaspare Spontini)
Opera in 4 acts By Giacomo Puccini Libretto: Giuseppe Giacosa & Luigi Illica, after Scènes de la vie de bohème by Henry Murger (1851) First performed: Teatro Rugin, Turin, 1 February 1896, conducted by Arturo Toscanini Dossier STORY RODOLFO, a poet (tenor) MARCELLO, a painter (baritone) SCHAUNARD, a musician (baritone) COLLINE, a philosopher (bass) MIMI (soprano) MUSETTA (soprano) SETTING: Paris, about 1830 Synopsis based … Continue reading 60. La Bohème (Giacomo Puccini)