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Tosca's Rome the Play and the Opera in Historical Perspective

by Susan Vandiver Nicassio

  • ISBN: 9780226579719
  • ISBN10: 0226579719

Tosca's Rome the Play and the Opera in Historical Perspective

by Susan Vandiver Nicassio

  • List Price: $65.00
  • Binding: Hardcover
  • Publisher: Univ of Chicago Pr
  • Publish date: 10/01/1999
  • ISBN: 9780226579719
  • ISBN10: 0226579719
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Description: A timeless tale of love, lust, and politics, Tosca is one of the most popular operas ever written. In Tosca's Rome, Susan Vandiver Nicassio explores the surprising historical realities that lie behind Giacomo Puccini's opera and the play by Victorien Sardou on which it is based.

By far the most "historical" opera in the active repertoire, Tosca is set in a very specific time and place: Rome, from June 17 to 18, 1800. But as Nicassio demonstrates, history in Tosca is distorted by nationalism and by the vehement anticlerical perceptions of papal Rome shared by Sardou, Puccini, and the librettists. To provide the historical background necessary for understanding Tosca, Nicassio takes a detailed look at Rome in 1800 as each of Tosca's main characters would have seen it -- the painter Cavaradossi, the singer Tosca, and the policeman Scarpia. Finally, she provides a scene-by-scene musical and dramatic analysis of the opera.

Opera lovers, lovers of Rome, and anyone seeking an accessible, interdisciplinary introduction to the history of late eighteenth-century Italy will enjoy this lively book.

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