Umberto Giordano (1896) portrayed by Gaetano Esposito
|Died||12 November 1948 (aged 81)|
Umberto Menotti Maria Giordano (28 August 1867 –12 November 1948) was an Italian composer, mainly of operas.
Opera is a form of theatre in which music has a leading role and the parts are taken by singers, but is distinct from musical theater. Such a "work" is typically a collaboration between a composer and a librettist and incorporates a number of the performing arts, such as acting, scenery, costume, and sometimes dance or ballet. The performance is typically given in an opera house, accompanied by an orchestra or smaller musical ensemble, which since the early 19th century has been led by a conductor.
He was born in Foggia in Apulia, southern Italy, and studied under Paolo Serrao at the Conservatoire of Naples.His first opera, Marina, was written for a competition promoted by the music publishers Casa Sonzogno for the best one-act opera, remembered today because it marked the beginning of Italian verismo . The winner was Mascagni's Cavalleria rusticana . Giordano, the youngest contestant, was placed sixth among seventy-three entries with his Marina, a work which generated enough interest for Sonzogno to commission the staging of an opera based on it in the 1891–92 season.
Foggia is a city and comune of Apulia, in southern Italy, capital of the province of Foggia. In 2013 its population was 153,143. Foggia is the main city of a plain called Tavoliere, also known as the "granary of Italy".
Apulia is a region in Southern Italy bordering the Adriatic Sea to the east, the Ionian Sea to the southeast, and the Strait of Otranto and Gulf of Taranto to the south. The region comprises 19,345 square kilometers (7,469 sq mi), and its population is about four million.
Italy, officially the Italian Republic, is a country in Southern Europe. Located in the middle of the Mediterranean Sea, Italy shares open land borders with France, Switzerland, Austria, Slovenia and the enclaved microstates San Marino and Vatican City. Italy covers an area of 301,340 km2 (116,350 sq mi) and has a largely temperate seasonal and Mediterranean climate. With around 61 million inhabitants, it is the fourth-most populous EU member state and the most populous country in Southern Europe.
The result was Mala vita , a gritty verismo opera about a labourer who vows to reform a prostitute if he is cured of his tuberculosis. This work caused something of a scandal when performed at the Teatro Argentina, Rome, in February 1892. It played successfully in Vienna, Prague and Berlin and was re-written as Il Voto a few years later, in an attempt to raise interest in the work again.
Mala vita is an opera in three acts composed by Umberto Giordano to a libretto by Nicola Daspuro adapted from Salvatore Di Giacomo and Goffredo Cognetti's verismo play of the same name. Giordano's first full-length opera, Mala vita premiered on 21 February 1892 at the Teatro Argentina. It was subsequently performed in Naples, Vienna, Berlin and Milan, and other Italian cities over the next two years. In 1897 a considerably re-worked and revised version under the title Il voto premiered in Milan. Within a few years both versions had disappeared from the repertoire. Amongst its rare modern revivals was the 2002 performance at the Teatro Umberto Giordano in Foggia which was recorded live and released on the Bongiovanni label.
The Teatro Argentina is an opera house and theatre located in Largo di Torre Argentina, a square in Rome, Italy. One of the oldest theatres in Rome, it was constructed in 1731 and inaugurated on 31 January 1732 with Berenice by Domenico Sarro. It is built over part of the curia section of the Theatre of Pompey. This curia was the location of the assassination of Julius Caesar.
Giordano tried a more romantic topic with his next opera, Regina Diaz , with a libretto by Giovanni Targioni-Tozzetti and Guido Menasci (1894), but this was a failure, taken off the stage after just two performances.
Regina Diaz is an opera in two acts composed by Umberto Giordano to a libretto by Giovanni Targioni-Tozzetti and Guido Menasci. It premiered on 5 March 1894 at the Teatro Mercadante in Naples. The libretto is based on Lockroy and Edmond Badon's Un duel sous le cardinal de Richelieu, which was also the source of Donizetti's 1843 opera Maria di Rohan, although the setting for Giordano's version was moved from 17th-century Paris to 18th-century Naples. The opera was a failure at its premiere and withdrawn after the second performance. Giordano's patron and publisher, Edoardo Sonzogno, blamed the failure on the poor libretto. Giordano blamed it on Sonzogno's interference in the production.
A libretto is the text used in, or intended for, an extended musical work such as an opera, operetta, masque, oratorio, cantata or musical. The term libretto is also sometimes used to refer to the text of major liturgical works, such as the Mass, requiem and sacred cantata, or the story line of a ballet.
Giovanni Targioni-Tozzetti was an Italian librettist, best known for his friendship and collaboration with the composer Pietro Mascagni. Most of his libretti were written in collaboration with Guido Menasci.
Giordano then moved to Milan and returned to verismo with his best-known work, Andrea Chénier (1896), based on the life of the French poet André Chénier.Fedora (1898), based on Victorien Sardou's play, featured a rising young tenor named Enrico Caruso. It was also a success and is still performed today. His later works are much less known, but occasionally revived and in the case of La cena delle beffe (based on the play of the same title by Sem Benelli) recognised by musicologists and critics with some respect. He died in Milan at the age of 81.
Milan is a city in northern Italy, capital of Lombardy, and the second-most populous city in Italy after Rome, with the city proper having a population of 1,372,810 while its metropolitan area has a population of 3,245,308. Its continuously built-up urban area has a population estimated to be about 5,270,000 over 1,891 square kilometres. The wider Milan metropolitan area, known as Greater Milan, is a polycentric metropolitan region that extends over central Lombardy and eastern Piedmont and which counts an estimated total population of 7.5 million, making it by far the largest metropolitan area in Italy and the 54th largest in the world. Milan served as capital of the Western Roman Empire from 286 to 402 and the Duchy of Milan during the medieval period and early modern age.
Andrea Chénier is a verismo opera in four acts by Umberto Giordano, set to an Italian libretto by Luigi Illica, and first performed on 28 March 1896 at La Scala, Milan. The story is based loosely on the life of the French poet André Chénier (1762–1794), who was executed during the French Revolution. The character Carlo Gérard is partly based on Jean-Lambert Tallien, a leading figure in the Revolution. It remains popular with audiences, though less frequently performed than in the first half of the 20th century. One reason for its survival in the repertoire is the lyrical-dramatic music provided by Giordano for the tenor lead, which gives a talented singer opportunities to demonstrate his histrionic skill and flaunt his voice. Giuseppe Borgatti's triumph in the title role at the first performance immediately propelled him to the front rank of Italian opera singers. He went on to become Italy's greatest Wagnerian tenor, rather than a verismo-opera specialist.
André Marie Chénier was a French poet of Greek and Franco-Levantine origin, associated with the events of the French Revolution of which he was a victim. His sensual, emotive poetry marks him as one of the precursors of the Romantic movement. His career was brought to an abrupt end when he was guillotined for supposed "crimes against the state", just three days before the end of the Reign of Terror. Chénier's life has been the subject of Umberto Giordano's opera Andrea Chénier and other works of art.
The most important theater in his home town of Foggia has been dedicated to Umberto Giordano. A square in Foggia is also named after him and contains several statues representing his most famous works.
Pietro Antonio Stefano Mascagni was an Italian composer best known for his operas, such as his 1890 masterpiece Cavalleria Rusticana which caused one of the greatest sensations in opera history and single-handedly ushered in the Verismo movement in Italian dramatic music. While it was often held that Mascagni, like Ruggiero Leoncavallo, was a "one-opera man" who could never repeat his first success, L'amico Fritz and Iris have remained in the repertoire in Europe since their premieres. Mascagni said that at one point, Iris was performed in Italy more often than Cavalleria.
Francesco Cilea was an Italian composer. Today he is particularly known for his operas L'arlesiana and Adriana Lecouvreur.
In opera, verismo was a post-Romantic operatic tradition associated with Italian composers such as Pietro Mascagni, Ruggero Leoncavallo, Umberto Giordano, Francesco Cilea and Giacomo Puccini. Verismo as an operatic genre had its origins in an Italian literary movement of the same name. This was in turn related to the international literary movement of naturalism as practised by Émile Zola and others. Like naturalism, the verismo literary movement sought to portray the world with greater realism. In so doing, Italian verismo authors such as Giovanni Verga wrote about subject matter, such as the lives of the poor, that had not generally been seen as a fit subject for literature.
Fedora is an opera in three acts by Umberto Giordano to an Italian libretto by Arturo Colautti, based on the play Fédora by Victorien Sardou. Along with Andrea Chénier and Siberia, it is one of the most notable works of Giordano.
Daniela Dessì was an Italian operatic soprano, born in Genoa.
The Teatro Lirico is a theatre in Milan, Italy. In the 19th and early 20th centuries it was particularly notable for opera performances, including the world premieres of Donizetti's L'elisir d'amore and Giordano's Fedora. The theatre, located on Via Rastrelli, closed in 1998. However, a restoration project was begun in April 2007, and it was due to re-open in 2009 as the Teatro Lirico Giorgio Gaber.
Maria Caniglia was one of the leading Italian dramatic sopranos of the 1930s and 1940s.
Leopoldo Mugnone was an Italian conductor, especially of opera, whose most famous work was done in the period 1890-1920, both in Europe and South America. He conducted various operatic premieres, and was also a composer of operas.
Spyridon-Filiskos Samaras was a Greek composer particularly admired for his operas who was part of the generation of composers that heralded the works of Giacomo Puccini. His compositions were praised worldwide during his lifetime and he is arguably the most internationally appreciated Greek composer before Dimitri Mitropoulos. He is best known for composing the Olympic hymn.
Hipòlit Lázaro, better known as Hipólito Lázaro, was a Catalan-Spanish opera singer. He was active as an operatic tenor for four decades from 1910 through 1950.
This is a list of recordings of Andrea Chénier, an opera by the composer Umberto Giordano, which was first performed at the Teatro alla Scala, Milan, on 28 March 1896.
Mese mariano is an opera in one act by Umberto Giordano. Its Italian libretto by Salvatore Di Giacomo was adapted from his play 'O Mese Mariano, which was in turn adapted from his novella, Senza vederlo. It premiered at the Teatro Massimo in Palermo on 17 March 1910. The opera is described as a bozzetto lirico and has a running time of 35 minutes. It tells the story of a woman who visits an orphanage to see her child. Racked with guilt at having abandoned him, she is unaware that he had died the night before.
Francesco Maria Bonini was an Italian baritone who had a major international opera career from 1896 through 1927. He was one of the first wave of musicians to be recorded, having made a number of recordings with Fonotipia Records in Milan in 1905–1906.
Franco Lo Giudice was an Italian tenor who had a successful international opera career during the first half of the twentieth century. He was an important exponent of the works of Riccardo Zandonai, notably starring in the world premieres of his operas I cavalieri di Ekebù (1925) and Giuliano (1928). His voice is preserved on a number of recordings made with the HMV, Parlophone, and Pathé record labels. Music critic Alan Blyth described him as a "fiery, strong tenor" who "excelled in verismo parts."
La cena delle beffe is an opera in four acts composed by Umberto Giordano to an Italian libretto by Sem Benelli adapted from his 1909 play of the same name. The opera premiered on 20 December 1924 at La Scala. Milan. The story, set in Florence at the time of Lorenzo de' Medici, recounts the rivalry between Giannetto Malespini and Neri Chiaramantesi for the affections of the beautiful Ginevra and Giannetto's thirst for revenge over a cruel joke played on him by Neri and his brother Gabriello. Giannetto's revenge "joke" ultimately leads Neri to murder both Ginevra and his own brother. The opera ends with Neri's descent into madness.
Luigi Marini, was an Italian lyric tenor.
NeldaGarrone was an Italian mezzo-soprano, best known for her interpretations of comprimaria roles in some of the earliest complete opera recordings.
Nicola Daspuro was an Italian writer, journalist, and librettist. Amongst his librettos were those for Macagni's L'amico Fritz and Giordano's Mala vita. Several of his librettos were written under the anagramatic pseudonym P. Suardon.