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Classicsonline Home » Artists » » Zagorzanka, Barbara

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Barbara Zagorzanka


Descended from a family of musicians, Puccini was the most important Italian opera composer in the generation after Verdi. He was born and educated in Lucca, later studying under Ponchielli at the Milan Conservatory. He began his career as a composer of opera with Le Villi, on the story familiar from Adam's ballet Giselle, but first won significant success in 1893 with Manon Lescaut. A musical dramatist of considerable power, if sometimes lacking in depth, he wrote in all twelve operas, the last, Turandot, still unfinished at the time of his death in 1924.

Operas

The opera Manon Lescaut, using the full name of the heroine of the 18th century Abbé Prévost's novel to distinguish the work from Massenet's treatment of the same subject, won great success. Manon seduced by the old Géronte returns to her former lover, Des Grieux, but is betrayed to the authorities and transported to America, where she dies in the arms of her lover, who has followed her. La Bohéme, first staged in 1896, centres on the love of Mim" and the poet Rodolfo in the Latin Quarter of Paris, a story of innocent love, betrayal and the final death of the heroine. Tosca, staged first in Rome in 1900, deals with the love of the singer Tosca for the painter Cavaradossi, their implication in revolutionary activities and death through the machinations of the wicked police-chief Scarpia, himself murdered by Tosca. Madama Butterfly is a story of love betrayed, the innocent Japanese heroine of the title deserted by her faithless American husband and finally

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Discography



Brass Ensemble Music – 19th Century Composers



 

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