Cher Public

Roberto Devereux: Tragedy Mirrored

Devereux Leyla GencerBy the time Roberto Devereux saw its premiere at Napoli’s Teatro San Carlo on 29 October, 1837, Gaetano Donizetti had lost, in an 18-month time frame, both his parents, two still-born children, and his beloved wife Virginia. (Ten years later, the unfortunate composer, after a gradual descent into madness, met a grisly end, from complications of syphilis.) The opera was completed a month after his wife’s death. We can scarcely imagine how the composer, in his grief, summoned up the means to create an opera—and one that so often teems with his richest levels of inspiration.  Read more »

Strange music

Sempiternal soprano Edita Gruberova celebrates her “45th stage anniversary” tomorrow, Monday February 18 with a performance of Alaide in Bellini’s La Straniera live from the Vienna Musikverein. The event will be webcast live on sonostream.tv starting at 1:30 PM New York time. Read more »