Monteverdi: Introduction to Orfeo: Opera Explained

David Timson: Introduction to Orfeo: Opera Explained
Title: Introduction to Orfeo: Opera Explained
Label: Naxos Educational

Monteverdi's Orfeo, first performed in 1607, generates a special excitement because it is the first unquestioned masterpiece of opera. Notable for it's precise orchestration and powerful drama it was a groundbreaking work. It concerns the legend of Orpheus, the demi-god whose music had the power to conquer the forces of Hell and to bring his wife back, briefly, to life. The extracts used in this introduction are from Naxos's full recording; it uses authentic period instruments, which serve to evoke the early Baroque period of the opera's composition.

1.1 Background: Introduction
1.2 Background: Monteverdi's Early Life and Education
1.3 Background: Monteverdi's Other Operas and Performance Practice
1.4 Orfeo: Prologue
1.5 Orfeo: A Shepherd Summons the Chorus to Sing
1.6 Orfeo: Orpheus Is Told That Eurydice Is Dead
1.7 Orfeo: Expressions of Grief from the Chorus and Shepherds
1.8 Orfeo: Orpheus Descends Into Hell
1.9 Orfeo: Charon's Response to Orpheus
1.10 Orfeo: Pluto's Pronouncement
1.11 Orfeo: Doubts Assail Orpheus
1.12 Orfeo: Orpheus's Long Lament and the First Ending
1.13 Orfeo: The Second Ending

Monteverdi: Introduction to Orfeo: Opera Explained

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