By Sir Denis Forman
This just a little irreverent consultant to opera summarizes the plots of 17 of the world's nice operas, together with Aida, l. a. Boheme, and Carmen, and describes their characters, artists, and composers.
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Extra info for A Night at the Opera: An Irreverent Guide to the Plots, the Singers, the Composers, the Recordings
Here’s a secret key says Adriana. Get out. Who are you? asks the Princess. Mind your own business says Adriana. Do you know Maurizio? asks the Princess. By the way I love him. He’s mine. Rubbish he’s mine says Adriana. A big argument is terminated by the Prince and helpers appearing in the garden with torches etc. The Princess scarpers. The search party enters: Michonnet finds the Princess’s specs on the floor. He hands them to Adriana. Act III A large room in the Bouillon palace prepared as private theatre The Abbé fusses around fixing furniture and sucking up to the Princess.
The temptation to let in some outstanding outsiders (Peter Grimes) and to chuck out some of the weaker qualifiers (Lakmé) has been resisted, with difficulty. Every one of the 83 operas is a guaranteed three-entry item. • Proper names are used in the form that comes most naturally. Opera people tend to talk of Meistersinger, The Flute, Lucia, not The Mas-tersingers, Zauberflöte or Lucy. Every opera has its proper title in its own language at the head of each entry. • The same principle spreads far and wide throughout the guide.
This may seem odd but it is done to fall in with common usage and anyway consistency is ‘the hobgoblin of small minds’. –where the opera is in English anyway. Accents, umlauts, circumflexes and cedillas are commonly done away with unless they are needed as a guide to pronunciation. A good deal of dog-Italian occurs and even the English language is treated with scant respect. • Throughout the guide Acts are Acts–I, II, III, IV and in extreme cases V. After Scene 1 (Sc 1) scenes are only newly numbered as scenes (Sc 2) where there is a change of scenery.
A Night at the Opera: An Irreverent Guide to the Plots, the Singers, the Composers, the Recordings by Sir Denis Forman