The Cambridge Companion to Grand Opera

The Cambridge Companion to Grand Opera

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This 2003 Companion is a fascinating and accessible exploration of the world of grand opera. Through this volume a team of scholars and writers on opera examine those important Romantic operas which embraced the Shakespearean sweep of tragedy, history, love in time of conflict, and the struggle for national self-determination. Rival nations, rival religions and violent resolutions are common elements, with various social or political groups represented in the form of operatic choruses. The book traces the origins and development of a style created during an increasingly technical age, which exploited the world-renowned skills of Parisian stage-designers, artists, and dancers as well as singers. It analyses in detail the grand operas by Rossini, Auber, Meyerbeer and Halevy, discusses grand opera in Russia and Germany, and also in the Czech lands, Italy, Britain and the Americas. The volume also includes an essay by the renowned opera director David more

Product details

  • Electronic book text
  • Cambridge University Press (Virtual Publishing)
  • Cambridge, United Kingdom
  • 29 b/w illus. 20 tables 46 music examples
  • 1139797018
  • 9781139797016

About David Charlton

David Charlton is Professor of Music History at Royal Holloway, University of London. He is the author of Gretry and the Growth of Opera-Comique (Cambridge, 1986), E. T. A. Hoffman's Musical Writings: Kreisleriana; The Poet and the Composer; Music Criticism (Cambridge, 1989) and most recently, French Opera 1730-1830 (2000).show more

Review quote

'... contains more information about its subject than any previous publication in English. For the serious lover of opera, as well as for the cultural historian, this is not only an impressive collection but one that will be dipped into for many years.' Contemporary Review '... a book, that deserves no recommendation lower than the very high one conferred by its own scholarship.' Gramophone 'This collection of 19 essays offers a thematic survey of the genre ... although written largely by academics, this absorbing book is refreshingly free of academic jargon. Its contributors obviously share a love of the subject and are keen to share their enthusiasm. It will appeal to anyone who enjoys opera.' Classical Music 'Charlton's book is well-illustrated (copious music examples) and annotated and has been seen through the press with agreeable accuracy. It reads well, is an invaluable reference work and should have the English language to itself for many a long year.' BBC Music Magazine 'This is a comprehensive and extensive book. Anyone needing to study grand opera should ensure that they have it to hand. It also provides superb background reading if you want to explore the operas of Meyerbeer et al.' www.musicweb-international.comshow more

Table of contents

1. Introduction David Charlton; Part I. The Resourcing of Grand Opera: 2. The 'machine' and the State Herve Lacombe; 3. Fictions and librettos Nicholas White; 4. The spectacle of the past in grand opera Simon Williams; 5. The chorus James Parakilas; 6. Dance and dancers Marian Smith; 7. Roles, reputations, shadows: singers at the Opera, 1828-49 Mary Ann Smart; Part II. Revaluation and the Twenty-first Century: 8. Directing grand opera: Rienzi and Guillaume Tell at the Vienna State Opera David Pountney; Part III. Grand Operas for Paris: 9. La Muette and her context Sarah Hibberd; 10. Scribe and Auber: constructing grand opera Herbert Schneider; 11. Meyerbeer: Robert le Diable and Les Huguenots Matthias Brzoska; 12. Meyerbeer: Le Prophete and L'Africaine John H. Roberts; 13. The grand operas of Fromental Halevy Diana R. Hallman; 14. From Rossini to Verdi M. Elizabeth C. Bartlett; 15. After 1850 at the Paris Opera: institution and repertory Steven Huebner; Part IV. Transformations of Grand Opera: 16. Richard Wagner and the legacy of French grand opera Thomas Grey; 17. Grand opera in Russia: fragments Marina Frolova-Walker; 18. Grand opera among the Czechs Jan Smaczny; 19. Italian opera Fiamma Nicolodi; 20. Grand opera in Britain and the Americas Sarah more

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