124. Orlando furioso (Vivaldi)

Dramma per musico in 3 actsComposer: Antonio VivaldiLibretto: Grazio Braccioli, after Ariosto's Orlando FuriosoFirst performed: Teatro Sant'Angelo, Venice, autumn 1727 Vivaldi, like his wicked sorceress Alcina, enchants the senses, then lures us into a queasily erotic nightmare of the sort we associate more with Richard Strauss than opera seria. Gustave Doré's depiction of Alcina The … Continue reading 124. Orlando furioso (Vivaldi)

114. Roland (Lully)

Composer: Jean-Baptiste LullyLibretto: Philippe Quinault, after Aristo's Orlando FuriosoFirst performed: Versailles, 8 January 1685 Lully considered Roland his best opera. It certainly contains some of his best music, but the story is insubstantial and over-extended. The opera is based on an episode in Ariosto's epic poem Orlando Furioso (1516), a chivalric romance full of warring Christians … Continue reading 114. Roland (Lully)