Friday, April 8, 2011

Lovelorn Venetian Singer Commits Suicide in 1876

La Gioconda is an opera in four acts by Amilcare Ponchielli set to an Italian libretto by Arrigo Boito, based on Angelo, tyran de Padoue, a play in prose by Victor Hugo, dating from 1835. (This is the same source as Gaetano Rossi had used for his libretto for Mercadante's Il giuramento in 1837). First performed in 1876, La Gioconda was a major success for Ponchielli, as well as the most successful new Italian opera between Verdi's Aida (1871) and Otello (1887). It is also a famous example of the Italian genre of grand opera, the equivalent of French Grand-Opéra. La Gioconda was first performed at the Teatro alla Scala, Milan, on April 8, 1876. It was especially successful in its third and final version first seen at the same theatre on March 28, 1880. The opera made its United States debut at the Metropolitan Opera on December 20, 1883. [Source]

"Suicidio" - Maria Callas

"E un anatema" - Aprile Millo and Dolora Zajick

"Voce di donna o d'angelo" - Margaret Harshaw

"O monumento" - Leonard Warren

"Cielo e mar" - Franco Corelli

"Si! Morir ella de!" - Plinio Clabassi

"Dance of the Hours" Philharmonia Orchestra conducted by Herbert von Karajan

"Ecco la barca, addio" - Joan Sutherland, Marilyn Horne, Luciano Pavarotti

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