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Thread: Rossini, Gioacchino (1792-1868)

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    Senior Member science's Avatar
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    Default Rossini, Gioacchino (1792-1868)

    Rossini is best known for operas such as The Barber of Seville and William Tell (the overture of which was used as the music for "The Lone Ranger" radio and television shows).

    His sacred music, especially his Messe Solennelle and Stabat Mater, are also very popular.

    And for some fun off the beaten path, his Péchés de vieillesse (Sins of old age) have plenty of delights, though to the best of my knowledge they've never been entirely recorded.
    Liberty for wolves is death to the lambs.

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    Quote Originally Posted by science View Post
    Rossini is best known for operas such as The Barber of Seville and William Tell (the overture of which was used as the music for "The Lone Ranger" radio and television shows).

    His sacred music, especially his Messe Solennelle and Stabat Mater, are also very popular.

    And for some fun off the beaten path, his Péchés de vieillesse (Sins of old age) have plenty of delights, though to the best of my knowledge they've never been entirely recorded.
    His Barber of Seville overture helped get me into classical. He's definitely got some great tunes and is a very good orchestrator. A bit underrated I guess.

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    Quote Originally Posted by science View Post
    His sacred music, especially his Messe Solennelle and Stabat Mater, are also very popular.
    Not as popular as they deserve. Being on pair with some of greatest works of sacred music by composers like Mozart or Haydn, they still suffer from the general bias of most listeners and "oh, I'm not really into opera composers" logic that prevent many from even giving this music a try.

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    Wow, only three posts for Rossini? From what I've heard of his music he really was a great composer. He is pretty underrated. I love the Barber of Seville Overture, it's a piece that I've heard all of my life and have always liked. It was one of the pieces that got me interested in exploring the realm of classical music just a few months ago.

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    Quote Originally Posted by science View Post
    ...

    His sacred music, especially his Messe Solennelle and Stabat Mater, are also very popular.

    ...
    His Petite Messe Solennelle (1863) is a masterpiece imo. I don't really understand why it is so seldom performed live or recorded...

    I prefer the original organic (soli, small choir, 2 pianos and harmonium) than the later composer's revision for large choir and orchestra. It's an intimate and shiny gem indeed.

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    I read somewhere that in Rossini’s days, his music was compared to champagne. It’s bubbly and it can quickly make you overexcited and possibly light-headed. In fact, in those days, it seems that some women actually fainted when they heard Rossini’s operas, so unused they were to hearing such overtly exciting and erotic music.

    Rossini was the most well-known composers of his days. He notoriously self-plagiarized and cranked out his operas one after the next, often borrowing material from previous ones and feeding it back to his gullible audience. Yet, he was a genius! He quit everything at age 38 (or 39?) to go live in Paris with his fortune and enjoy a life of leisure. Or, possibly, he became accutely depressed and couldn’t compose anymore. Others say that he felt he did not “fit in” anymore in the new era of romantic excessiveness where music and opera were going.

    Nonetheless, he’s one of my favorite composers. Barber of Seville is the greatest opera buffa of all times. And his overtures ARE like champagne. Bubbly, exciting, and listening to anyone of them is the quickest way to feel happy in less than 9 minutes.

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    Senior Member jegreenwood's Avatar
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    Happy Birthday Gioacchino. You and Frederic (from The Pirates of Penzance) don't get many of them.
    Last edited by jegreenwood; Feb-29-2016 at 14:25.

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    This comes from the complete set of Rossini overtures played by Sir Neville Marriner and the Academy of St. Martin-in-the-Fields:

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    I love Rossini's music but he wrote so many operas, once I've gotten past the handful of extremely popular ones, I'm not certain which of the others are the best. As far as recordings I have:

    Il Turco in Italia
    Barber of Seville
    La Cenerentola
    Ermione
    Guillaume Tell

    Both Semiramide and L'Italiana in Algeri have lots of fans.

    After those 7 what would be the one most worth listening to?

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    AS we do not have a 29th February, remembering Mr. Rossini now.

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    Quote Originally Posted by cougarjuno View Post
    I love Rossini's music but he wrote so many operas, once I've gotten past the handful of extremely popular ones, I'm not certain which of the others are the best. As far as recordings I have:

    Il Turco in Italia
    Barber of Seville
    La Cenerentola
    Ermione
    Guillaume Tell

    Both Semiramide and L'Italiana in Algeri have lots of fans.

    After those 7 what would be the one most worth listening to?
    Both Otello and Elisabetta Regina d'Inghilterra are great operas. If you are looking for something else, he also wrote a very fine bassoon concerto.

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    I agree with Otello and also recommend La Donna Del Lago

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    Quote Originally Posted by cougarjuno View Post
    I love Rossini's music but he wrote so many operas, once I've gotten past the handful of extremely popular ones, I'm not certain which of the others are the best. As far as recordings I have:

    Il Turco in Italia
    Barber of Seville
    La Cenerentola
    Ermione
    Guillaume Tell

    Both Semiramide and L'Italiana in Algeri have lots of fans.

    After those 7 what would be the one most worth listening to?
    TANCREDI: The opera seria that made Rossini's name. Has the macaroni aria, "Di tanti palpiti", and an exciting Act I finale.

    OTELLO: It isn't Shakespeare (for the most part), and it isn't Verdi. But Act II has a run of great music (duets and trios), and Act III - the murder of Desdemona, with Willow Song, gondolier, and storm - is powerful.

    GAZZA LADRA: Under-rated around these parts, I think; the overture is one of Rossini's best; there's some good music in the prison scene, and the pealing of the bell at the end is joyous.

    ARMIDA: One of the experimental works for Naples; often frankly erotic. Highlights include an exciting Act I finale, the duet "Amor! possente nome", and the Mirror Trio.

    MOSÈ IN EGITTO: Rossini's Biblical opera. Has the famous "Dal tuo stellato soglio", and a beautiful quartet.

    RICCIARDO E ZORAIDE: Rather overlooked, but has some of Rossini's best music: the trio "Cruda sorte!" and the quartet "Contro cento".

    LA DONNA DEL LAGO: Wonderful opera, based on Scott. Lyrical, elegiac, with a stunning Act I finale and a superb trio in Act II. The Met's HD production is excellent.

    BIANCA E FALLIERO: The quartet (admired by Stendhal) is great, but otherwise this is a bore.

    MAOMETTO II / LE SIÈGE DE CORINTHE: Another Rossini masterpiece, which shows the massive architectural structures of the Neapolitan works - such as the Terzettone, a half-hour trio. Later rejigged for Paris.

    MATILDE DI SHABRAN: Rossini revisits comic opera (semiseria), after the mature Naples masterpieces; full of inspired ensembles, and a proto-feminist heroine. I like it more than, say, TURCO IN ITALIA.

    ZELMIRA: Hugely underrated! Has, among other goodies, a brilliant tenor aria ("Terra amica"), an exquisite duettino for soprano and contralto, and one for bass and tenor.

    IL VIAGGIO A REIMS: The Castafiore Emerald of Rossini's operas: a frenetically busy plot that goes nowhere. Written for the French king's coronation, and then lost until the 1980s. Has the Gran Concertato a 14 voci.

    LE COMTE ORY: Brilliant French comedy, about a Don Giovanni wannabe who dresses as a nun to try to seduce a highborn dame. Uses some of the numbers from IL VIAGGIO A REIMS, but the trio - admired by Berlioz - is a) new, b) a masterpiece.

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    Senior Member Rogerx's Avatar
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    Born : 29 February 1792, Pesaro, Italia- 13 november 1868, Passy, Paris, France
    “Never argue with an idiot. They will drag you down to their level and beat you with experience.” ― Mark Twain

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    My favorites are Barber of Seville, Cenerentola, and the Thieving Magpie.
    “Then he will also say to those on the left, ‘Depart from me, you who are cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels!'" Matthew 25:41 (Christian Standard Bible)

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