How to Enjoy Opera

How to Enjoy Opera

by John Snelson


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John Snelson, Commissioning Editor at The Royal Opera House, explores how the music tells the story in opera. Aimed at newcomers as well as long-time fans, this book focuses on how to look and listen to any opera. The text covers many of the elements that composers and librettists employ to give enjoyment to audiences, in the hope that readers can gain greater enjoyment from future viewing and listening, too.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781783198238
Publisher: Oberon Books
Publication date: 09/27/2016
Pages: 200
Product dimensions: 5.10(w) x 7.80(h) x 0.50(d)

About the Author

John Snelson is Commissioning Editor at the Royal Opera House. He studied music at the universities of Nottingham, Reading and Birmingham and has worked extensively in both music performance and publishing. He was a Senior Internal Editor for the New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians (second edition), to which he also contributed many articles.

Table of Contents

Introduction 1

Chapter 1 Love, Death and Opera: Tosca 3

Chapter 2 A Certain Tone: Voice Types 12

Chapter 3 Crowd Control: Choruses and Ensembles 35

Chapter 4 Elemental Forces: Nature and Opera 60

Chapter 5 It Takes Two: Duets 83

Chapter 6 Moving Moments: Dance 109

Chapter 7 Heard but not Seen: Offstage Voices 130

Chapter 8 What Really Happened?: History and Opera 148

Chapter 9 Pit Stop: The Orchestra 172

Chapter 10 Caught in the Act: Theatricality and Opera 197

Coda 218

Acknowledgements 220

Appendix I List of operas referred to 225

Appendix II Time line of operas 235

Index of Works 239

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