Apr 1, 2020
In this series of podcasts, Seattle Opera Dramaturg Jonathan Dean gives listeners a taste of nine different types of traditional opera. Bel Canto Melodrama refers to for serious Italian opera from the first part of the nineteenth century—when opera singing was about dazzling trapeze acts, and opera plots tended toward the wild, far-fetched, and grotesque. Inspired by their newfound obsession with Shakespeare, Europe’s Romantic generation created some of opera’s most enduringly popular works, including Verdi’s Rigoletto and Bellini’s Norma.
Musical examples on the podcast drawn from Seattle Opera recordings of Rigoletto: from 1995, conducted by Phil Kelsey and starring Harolyn Blackwell; and from 2019, conducted by Carlo Montanaro and starring Giuseppe Altomare and Yongzhao Yu: and Seattle Opera Normas, both conducted by Edoardo Mueller, from 2003 starring Sally Wolf; and from 1994 starring Jane Eaglen. Also, Verdi’s Il trovatore conducted by Tullio Serafin (Deutsche Gramophon, 1962); and Rossini’s L’assedio di Corinto, Marilyn Horne conducted by Henry Lewis (Decca, 1973).
Stay tuned for another podcast introducing another kind of opera next week!