PORTUGAL (=PORTOGALLO), Marco Antonio da Fonseca, 1762-1830
Gli orazi e i curiazi
Partitura dell’opera in facsimile. Edizione del libretto. Catalogo cronologico degli spettacoli a Venezia (1897-1815). A cura di Maria Giovanna Miggiani
Musicale Veneta, 29.
Milan, 2011. Oblong, 30 x 23 cm, 2 vols, ccclxiii, xxiii, 541 pp.
Line-cut of a contemporary ms (full score). Cimarosa's “Gli Orazi e i Curiazi” represents the climax of his search for a “new genre” in Italian operatic tragedy and, at the same time, the setting and basic lyrics are emblematic of the development of new vocal personalities and new theatrical roles found in new vocal styles, especially that of the dramatic penetrating contralto, Giuseppina Grassini, and that of the new young heroic tenor, Matteo Babbini.
The huge, long-lasting success of this work is known to all, but what's less known is the fact that the La Fenice Theatre and the new Napoleonic Ferrara Theatre jointly produced a second setting to music of Sografi's libretto for the same singers, but with the music of a promising young composer, Marco Portogallo, whose style foreshadowed evolution in the so-called pre-Rossini style of serious vocal dramatic composition. The success of Cimarosa's Orazi was also thanks to many grafted sections with Portogallo's intonation, favoured and preferred by the singers. The aim of this facsimile of Portogallo's work is to provide a glimpse into the evolution of the Italian pre-Romantic opera drawing on original materials showing the dynamics of its birth. Commentary in It-Eng. Linen. $466. (view
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