It's a safe bet that much of the opera world owes its first sight of La clemenza di Tito to the eyes of Jean-Pierre Ponnelle, the man who shaped his vision of Mozart's final opera seria
in Cologne in 1969, replicated the concept in Munich, carried it to Salzburg in 1976, transferred it to film four years after that (substituting real Roman locations for his Piranesian sets), and then refashioned it again in 1984 for the opera's belated premiere at the Met, which in 2012 offered it still wider currency via a Live in HD transmission.
We plunge into sombre F minor, see mourning clothes and funeral cortege but then it suddenly becomes an elegant flowing pastoral siciliano - the romantic tristesse of a character in a Mozart opera seria
. Donohoe makes the transformation magical yet with a sense of absolute rightness.
It is an opera seria
in three acts that was first performed at Covent Garden in London on January 8, 1735.
Considered the most influential opera singer of the 20th century, Callas left behind a legacy of classical opera seria
to the bel canto operas of Donizetti, Bellini and Rossini, with her musical and dramatic talents leading to her being hailed as La Divina.
Her opulent voice, faultless technique, profound sensitivity, and boundless energy have allowed her to excel in opera seria
, bel canto, Verdi, Wagner, and more; among current singers, only Stephanie Blythe approaches her mastery of such a wide swath of repertoire with such convincing assurance and excellence.
Nel XVIII secolo, mentre prendeva forma l'opera seria
, l'intermezzo era anche molto popolare, non solo con la diffusione dell'opera seria
in Europa, ma anche messo in scena in maniera indipendente.
DON GIOVANNI: Opera Seria
come to Liverpool for one night only with Don Giovanni, Mozart's famous opera depicting the downfall of opera's most famous lothario.
The latter quality was inextricably linked with opera seria
and no more so than in the celebrated libretti of Pietro Metastasio, which were set time and time again by composers throughout the Italian peninsula and wherever the Italian style reigned supreme.
What else could you expect, though, from an opera where the name, in English, translates loosely to "the fallen woman" or "one who goes astray." That's not exactly a plot spoiler, given the number of operas that end in tragedy (opera seria
), as opposed to lighthearted comedies (opera buffa).