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Chapter 23: Romantic Opera: Italy. Italy. The golden age of opera with composers such as Rossini, Bellini, Verdi, Wagner, Bizet, and Puccini Bel canto : “ Beautiful singing ” Term coined by Rossini Early creators of bel canto include Donizetti and Bellini

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italy
Italy
  • The golden age of opera with composers such as Rossini, Bellini, Verdi, Wagner, Bizet, and Puccini
  • Bel canto:“Beautiful singing”
    • Term coined by Rossini
    • Early creators of bel canto include Donizetti and Bellini
    • Emphasis on beautiful vocal melodies
    • Orchestra provides simple harmonic support
    • Exalted the leading opera singers
    • Prima donna or diva: Lead soprano, usually the heroine
giuseppe verdi 1813 1901
Giuseppe Verdi (1813-1901)
  • Most popular opera composer throughout Europe
  • His operas are performed more than any others
  • Early operas supported Italian nationalism
    • Promoted a united Italy
    • Viva VERDI (Vittorio Emanuele Re d’Italia)
  • Dramas turned to domestic themes and personal conflict
  • Opera standards include: Rigoletto (1851), La traviata (1853), Il trovatore (1853), Aida (1871)
verdi s dramaturgy and musical style
Verdi’s Dramaturgy and Musical Style
  • Conflict – personal or national – the root of every emotion
  • Clear expression of emotion
  • Emotional states almost melodramatic
  • Intense passion and nonstop action
    • Recitativo accompagnato: Orchestra accompanies the recitative; Smooth transitions between recitative and aria
    • Arias push singers to the utmost of their range
    • Bel canto style
la traviata 1853
La traviata (1853)
  • “The Woman Gone Astray”
  • Based on a story (Camille) by Alexandre Dumas the younger
  • Pits passionate love against middle-class morality
  • “Un di felice”
    • Gala party at the end of the first act
    • Alfredo and Violetta sing to each other
slide6

La traviata, Act I, Scene 6

  • A Scena
    • Slow aria (“Ah fors´è lui”)
    • Recitative accompagnata (“Follie!”)
    • Cabaletta (“Sempre libera”)
      • A fast-paced concluding aria
      • Virtuosity serves a dramatic purpose
      • Allows character to rush off stage