Composer: Vincenzo Bellini
Publisher: G. Schirmer, Inc.
Paperback: 40 pages
Dimensions: Width: 6.7", Length: 10.5"
This opera is an extraordinary fusion of sublime melody, vocal challenge, and dramatic power. It examines an ageless and archetypal situation: a powerful woman compromises her ideals for love, only to find herself betrayed by her lover. But equally gripping is her relationship with the younger woman, who is the new object of her former lover’s attention and in whom Norma sees both a rival and a second self. The title role demands dramatic vocal power combined with the agility and technique of a coloratura singer. It is a daunting challenge that few can rise to: those who have are part of operatic lore. Premiere: Teatro alla Scala, Milan, 1831.
Vincenzo Bellini (1801–1835)
The opera is set in Gaul (France) at the beginning of its occupation by the Roman Empire. Almost all of the characters are druids, members of the Gallic priesthood, the only exceptions being the tenors, both of whom are Romans.
It is interesting that the Roman Empire, long depicted in European culture as a civilizing force, is here seen as corrupt and exploitative.
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