128. La serva padrona (Pergolesi)

Intermezzo in 2 partsComposer: Giovanni Battista PergolesiLibretto: Gennarantonio FedericoFirst performed: Teatro San Bartolomeo, Naples, 28 August 1733 For a comic interlude of 45 minutes, La serva padrona carries a lot of weight on her slim shoulders.  She’s the ancestrix of both the Italian opera buffa and the French opéra comique. The wily maidservant Serpina (little … Continue reading 128. La serva padrona (Pergolesi)

127. Germanico in Germania (Porpora)

Dramma per musica in 3 actsComposer: Nicola PorporaLibretto: Nicola ColuzziFirst performed: Teatro Capricana, Rome, 11 February 1732 Nicola Porpora was a master of writing for the human voice. In his day, he was one of Italy’s foremost singing teachers; his pupils at the Conservatorio di Sant’Onofrio, Naples, included the castrati Farinelli and Caffarelli (who studied … Continue reading 127. Germanico in Germania (Porpora)

126. Catone in Utica (Vinci)

Opera seria in 3 actsComposer: Leonardo VinciLibretto: Pietro MetastasioFirst performed: Teatro Alibert, Rome, 19 January 1728 A Roman triumph!  Decca’s 2015 recording (conductor Riccardo Minasi, with Il Pomo d’Oro) of this Caesarian opera seria has some of the most extraordinary singing I’ve ever heard.  Veni, audivi, Vinci, one might say. Catone in Utica was Leonardo … Continue reading 126. Catone in Utica (Vinci)