Maometto II - Performance History

Performance History

The Venice version and other productions in Europe, 1823–1826

In Venice, this version "was well received when Rossini revised it for performances....at the Teatro La Fenice in December 1822.", his last composition for an Italian house. However, the composer had to bow to a need for a significant change to the original ending, thus "spar(ing) Venetian sensibilities by providing a happy (one)".

Philip Gossett states that in the Venice score, which includes this happy ending, there is an explanation for the change: it is "to remove the horror of the historical catastrophe" and, therefore, Rossini instructed a copyist to end the opera using the rondo, Tanti affeti in tal momento, from his La donna del lago of 1819, thus removing Maometto's final confrontation with Anna, his discovery of her marriage to Calbo, and her suicide. This version also includes music from Bianca e Falliero.

In 1823 and 1824, Maometto II was presented in Vienna and in Milan and then in Lisbon in 1826, but after that it dropped out of sight.

Maometto II becomes Le siège de Corinthe

"A large part of (Maometto 's) score (was adapted) to a new French libretto" and staged in Paris on 9 October 1826 as Le siège de Corinthe, the 1820s wars between the Greeks and the Turks then being more topical than those between the Turks and the Venetians of the 15th Century original setting.

20th Century productions

In its original form Maometto II disappeared for almost 150 years. In 1976 the Metropolitan Opera "performed what they called L'assedio di Corinto, an Italian translation of Rossini's French revision of the score". A version was presented by the Rossini Festival in Pesaro in 1985. The San Francisco Opera production on 17 September 1988 was regarded as being "closer to the original Rossini version of the opera, but it too was highly problematic." No references to a production in the UK exist.

The Venice version was given at La fenice in February 2005, while performances using a version edited by conductor Claudio Scimone were given at the Pesaro Festival in August 2008.

Maometto II restored

Santa Fe Opera (New Mexico) gave a restored 1820 Naples Maometto II its world premiere on 14 July 2012. The performance used a critical edition by Dutch scholar Hans Schellevis to be published by Bärenreiter Verlag of Kassel in 2013 under the general editorship of musicologist Philip Gossett, who was present as advisor in Santa Fe during rehearsals. The cast featured Luca Pisaroni in the title role, soprano Leah Crocetto (grand prize winner of the 2010 Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions) as Anna, mezzo-soprano Patricia Bardon as Calbo, and tenor Bruce Sledge as Erisso. Directed by David Alden, the production was set in the 1820s.

Garsington Opera in England has announced that it will be presenting the critical edition during its 2013 summer season.

Read more about this topic:  Maometto II

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