A Book of Operas: Their Histories, Their Plots, and Their Music : Their Histories, Their Plots, and Their Music
"The history of what is popularly called Italian opera begins in the United States with a performance of Rossini's lyrical comedy "Il Barbiere di Siviglia"; it may, therefore, fittingly take the first place in these operatic studies. The place was the Park Theatre, then situated in Chambers Street, east of Broadway, and the date November 29, 1825. It was not the first performance of Italian opera music in America, however, nor yet of Rossini's merry work. In the early years of the nineteenth century New York was almost as fully abreast of the times in the matter of dramatic entertainments as London. New works produced in the English capital were heard in New York as soon as the ships of that day could bring over the books and the actors. Especially was this true of English ballad operas and English transcriptions, or adaptations, of French, German, and Italian operas. New York was five months ahead of Paris in making the acquaintance of the operatic version of Beaumarchais's "Barbier de Seville."
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B&R Samizdat Express
February 01, 2009
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