A Book of Operas: Their Histories, Their Plots, and Their Music

Overview

A Book of Operas - Their Histories, Their Plots, and Their Music by Henry Edward Krehbiel

Complete New Student / Teacher Edition

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, ...

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A Book of Operas : Their Histories, Their Plots, and Their Music (Illustrated)

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Overview

A Book of Operas - Their Histories, Their Plots, and Their Music by Henry Edward Krehbiel

Complete New Student / Teacher Edition

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 Séville." The first performance of Rossini's opera took place in Rome on February 5, 1816. London heard it in its original form at the King's Theatre on March 10, 1818, with Garcia, the first Count Almaviva, in that part. The opera "went off with unbounded applause," says Parke (an oboe player, who has left us two volumes of entertaining and instructive memoirs), but it did not win the degree of favor enjoyed by the other operas of Rossini then current on the English stage. It dropped out of the repertory of the King's Theatre and was not revived until 1822--a year in which the popularity of Rossini in the British metropolis may be measured by the fact that all but four of the operas brought forward that year were composed by him. Opera is an art form in which singers and musicians perform a dramatic work combining text (called a libretto) and musical score, usually in a theatrical setting. Opera incorporates many of the elements of spoken theatre, such as acting, scenery, and costumes and sometimes includes dance. The performance is typically given in an opera house, accompanied by an orchestra or smaller musical ensemble.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781497549586
  • Publisher: CreateSpace Publishing
  • Publication date: 4/4/2014
  • Pages: 208
  • Product dimensions: 7.00 (w) x 10.00 (h) x 0.44 (d)

Meet the Author

Henry Edward Krehbiel (March 10, 1854-March 20, 1923) was an American music critic and musicologist.

Krehbiel was born in Ann Arbor, Michigan. He received a general education from his father, a German clergyman of the Methodist Episcopal Church, and began in 1872 the study of law in Cincinnati, Ohio. In June, 1874, he was attached to the staff of the "Cincinnati Gazette" as musical critic, which post he held until November, 1880.

He then went to New York, where he became musical editor of the New York Tribune. He became an influential music critic, writing many articles for the Tribune, Scribner's Monthly, and other journals.

He authored many books about various aspects of music, including one of the earliest examinations of African American music.

He also annotated concert programs (including many of Paderewski's recitals).

Krehbiel translated some opera libretti, including: Nicolai's Die lustigen Weiber von Windsor (1886), Paderewski's Manru (1902), and Mozart's Der Schauspieldirektor (1916). (Dates given are the first performance of the English translation.) He also translated the biography of Ludwig van Beethoven written by Alexander Wheelock Thayer, first published in English in 1921.

Krehbiel was a strong supporter of music by Richard Wagner, Johannes Brahms, and Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky when they were not yet well known in America.

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