Close X Cookies are necessary for the proper functioning of 24hGold.com. By continuing your navigation on our website, you are accepting the use of cookies.
To learn more about cookies ...
EnglishFrench
Gold & Silver Prices in
In the same category

Giuseppe Verdi

IMG Auteur
Published : May 14th, 2013
678 words - Reading time : 1 - 2 minutes
( 2 votes, 5/5 ) , 1 commentary
Print article
  Article Comments Comment this article Rating All Articles  
0
Send
1
comment
Our Newsletter...
Category : Editorials



To commemorate his bicentennial, a brief biography of Verdi, the greatest Italian composer
By Peter McKenzie-Brown
A towering figure in his art, Giuseppe Verdi (9th or 10th of October 1813 – 27 January 1901) is often seen as an extraordinary genius whose operatic dominance is inexplicable. To the contrary: he was the greatest composer of a single generation of Italian opera composers who helped inspire each other’s work.

The others – Gioachino Rossini (1792-1868), Gaetano Donizetti (1797-1848) and Vincenzo Bellini (1801-1834) – each contributed to the florescence of Italy’s greatest century of opera. They were the main players in a style of opera known as “bel canto” (beautiful singing), which fell into a rut: star-crossed lovers and death in the final scene before a large and horrified chorus. Verdi changed this.

As a child he was a musical prodigy, and his family fervently hoped he would become the organist in the local cathedral. However, after receiving musical training in Milan, his talent became known. As an adult, he fundamentally changed Italian opera.

Verdi had a great love for the works of Shakespeare, and turned Macbeth, Othello and The Merry Wives of Windsor into operas. He unsuccessfully sought a libretto that would do justice to King Lear.

Most scholars consider Otello (completed when he was 74) to be his finest dramatic work. Composed six years later, Falstaff (based on the Merry Wives) is a comedic masterpiece. There is a story behind this: Verdi had been commissioned to write a comic opera (Un giorno di regno) as a young man, but during the period he was composing, his two children (both toddlers) died. Then his young wife died. Half a century elapsed before he was again willing to turn his hand to comedy.

Prior to Verdi, opera focused on aristocratic or classical subjects. By contrast, Verdi’s works focused on people his audience could relate to. His themes sometimes shocked – for example, La traviata (“The fallen woman”), was certainly influenced by Giuseppina Strepponi – his brilliant and talented mistress and second wife, whose biographer calls “a traviata who does not die of consumption but…is redeemed and lives on to the mature age of eighty-two.”

It is not possible to appreciate the life of Verdi without understanding the politics of the day. Verdi was born during the Napoleonic wars, in a segment of northwestern Italy that was briefly part of France. Although in 1814-15 the Congress of Vienna reestablished Austrian rule in Italy, but in 1830 there were popular uprisings against this state of affairs. Although repressed by the Imperial power, nationalism remained a latent force.

In his first successful opera, Nabucco, Verdi was able to go around the official censors with authority to demand changes to themes, characters and plot. The 1841 opera uses the biblical story of Nebuchadnezzar. Its best-known number is “Va, pensiero” (often called the Chorus of the Hebrew Slaves). Opera-goers associated their own plight with that of the slaves, and the work was a great success. Ever since, Verdi’s music has been associated with Italian nationalism.

The year 1848 saw political upheavals throughout Europe – the most widespread revolutionary wave in European history. Although most of the uprisings were put down, Sardinia-Piedmont became (and remained) an independent state. This was an important victory for Italian nationalism, and the country achieved independence (by plebiscite) in 1860.

Verdi wrote at least one opera per year after Nabucco and then, exhausted, tried to retire to his country estate and put down his pen in 1859. His best-known works from that period include Luisa Miller, Rigoletto, Il trovatore, La traviata, Les vêpres siciliennes, (Sicilian Vespers, with a French libretto). He wasn’t successful in ending his career, however, and for that his admirers have much to be grateful. In addition to the two late masterpieces mention above, he completed Aida in 1871 and revised Simon Boccanegra ten years later.

Two hundred thousand people lined the streets of Milan when his funeral cortege moved down the streets of Milan. He was certainly the greatest and most popular Italian of the nineteenth century.

Data and Statistics for these countries : France | Italy | All
Gold and Silver Prices for these countries : France | Italy | All
<< Previous article
Rate : Average note :5 (2 votes)
>> Next article
Peter McKenzie Brown is the vice president of a resource company. He has written several volumes of history, and has worked in the corporate and academic worlds. He is British by birth, American by upbringing and Canadian by choice. Disclaimer : Although the writer is a director and officer of Stratabound, the thoughts and views herein are his only and not those of Stratabound. He is not registered in any jurisdiction as a broker or investment adviser, so nothing herein should be construed as advice on whether to buy, sell or hold shares of Stratabound or any other company mentioned herein.
WebsiteSubscribe to his services
Comments closed
  All Favorites Best Rated  
Thank you for this piece. Verdi also possessed a deep social commitment - he shared his wealth with the poor among other things.
Latest comment posted for this article
Thank you for this piece. Verdi also possessed a deep social commitment - he shared his wealth with the poor among other things. Read more
dennyc - 5/24/2013 at 9:14 PM GMT
Top articles
MOST READ
March 27, 1980 : Silver Thursday, or the end of the The Hunt Brothers Story - History of Silver - Playboy  (4)
The US Constitution and Money - Michael S. Rozeff - Mike S. Rozeff  (8)
The Gold Bug (Edgar Allan Poe) - Treasures and Gold Fever - Edgar Allan Poe  (13)
What is Money? - Mike Hewitt - Dollar Daze
Most commented articles More... 
TOP RATED
The Gold Bug (Edgar Allan Poe) - Treasures and Gold Fever - Edgar Allan Poe  (13)
Discovery of Governmentium, the heaviest known element - Food for thought - Hat Trick Letter  (18)
The US Constitution and Money - Michael S. Rozeff - Mike S. Rozeff  (8)
Introduction to Economic Sophisms - Frederic Bastiat  (4)
Most commented articles More... 
MOST COMMENTED
100 Items That Disappear First in a Disaster - Beans Bullets Bullion and Bible - 24hgold  (17)
Most commented articles More... 
Latest Comments
‘Real’ Performance Comparison
26 MarChristopherbalz
Question: In the method of figuring inflation referenced, what is the rationale for adding population growth to productivity growth? Sugge...
100 Items That Disappear First in a Disaster
23 Markevthorne
68, 69 probably not that safe - particularly if you're growing your own vegetables - keep a Maine Coon cat instead: does the job automatically.
Farage Interviews Le Pen: “Prison of the EU”
21 Marneville1
BRITANNIA RULES THE WAVES AND NOW BREXIT WAIVES THE RULES. GO FOR IT FRANCE AND RID YOURSELVES FROM THE CHAINS OF IDIOTS. NOT SIN...
How the Fed Operates — And Why It's a Problem
20 Marramasart
In a nutshell, the Fed facilitates the theft of the value of the dollar, as they can control the increase in supply which at the same time inverts ...
How the Fed Operates — And Why It's a Problem
20 Marneville1
With all due respects for outlining how the crooked american Fed works or should work. From all our research we find the following the Fed...
Sparta - Gold prohibition in a collapsing economy
18 Markevthorne
You've answered none of the authors points: your comment is flat rubbish.
America Too Broke to Fix Crumbling Infrastructure? “Bridges, Roads,...
16 MarCameron Waugh1
Just like the leaders of the Bolshevik revolution were not Russians, those formulating belligerent US foreign policy are not Americans, and they ha...
POTUS at SOTUS
16 MarDRGEORGE1
Try explaining that to my patients dying on public waiting lists or getting ripped off by exorbitant private specialist fees!
Most commented articlesFavoritesMore...
World PM Newsflow
ALL
GOLD
SILVER
PGM & DIAMONDS
OIL & GAS
OTHER METALS