Manon – Jules Massenet

... The Abbe Prevost's 1731 novel, L'Histoire du Chevalier des Grieux et de Manon Lescaut, was the inspiration for no less than three operas, Puccini's Manon Lescaut, as well as two Manon's, the popular Massenet and a pretty much forgotten version by Auber. Our heroine, a country girl  ...

The Magic Flute – Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

Online references on Mozart Countless dozens of Ph.D theses must be written about Mozart's The Magic Flute and yet it is so lively with elements of fantasy and free-flying imagination that it is often the first opera to which children are taken. It has  ...

Luisa Miller – Giuseppe Verdi

All too often, theatrical works don't come alive on the stage or screen, due to a lack of dramatic tension. Dramatic tension requires conflict and conflict sets up an emotional need in the viewer for resolution. Verdi was adept at choosing sources for his operas which were laden with  ...

Lucia di Lammermoor – Gaetano Donizetti

. Suggested reading: Lucia di Lammermoor (Opera Journeys Mini Guide Series) Bel canto - literally beautiful singing - is a technical term for a particular singing technique (more info here), but the term is used popularly today to refer, in particular, to the style of operas  ...

Louise – Gustave Charpentier

The plot of Louise will tax no one in its level of difficulty. Girl finds boy, girl runs away with boy over (unreasonable) parental objections, girl and boy are deliriously happy, parents fail to get girl to return home to stay, parents are miserable. Finis. No subplots.  ...

La Juive – Jacques Fromental Halevy

Rhodium Silver Necklace set with light blue Magen David medallion. Doomed love, jealousy, mistaken identity and filial devotion. And if that’s not operatic enough for you, the two leading characters are thrown into a vat of boiling oil at the end. Jacques Fromental Halevy’s La  ...

Idomeneo – Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

Idomeneo VHS Idomeneo DVD 1982 Metropolitan Opera production with Pavarotti Suggested reading: Mozart: A Life 1996, Maynard Solomon Letters of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart Mozart: His Character, His Work (1991), Alfred Einstein (Translator) The Compleat Mozart: A  ...

I Cavalieri d’Ekebu – Riccardo Zandonai

Riccardo Zandonai is hardly a familiar name. Just about the only one of his operas that rates more than a mention is Francesca da Rimini, which seemed a noisy and unmusical bore when Scotto and Domingo sang it at the Met. But Francesca is not all of Zandonai. His  ...

Hamlet – Ambroise Thomas

The Keys to French Opera in the Nineteenth Century (2001), Herve Lacombe Online references on French opera A professor at the Paris Conservatory, and for some years its director, the French composer Ambroise Thomas wrote twenty  ...