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Superb ALS Mentioning “Lucia di Lammermoor” and Two Other Operas

$2640 net
Item: 22521
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DONIZETTI, GAETANO. (1797-1848). Italy’s pre-eminent opera composer between Bellini and Verdi. ALS. (“Donizetti”). 2pp. 8vo. [Paris, November 1843]. To a marquis. In French with translation.

“Dear Marquis – your opinion is so true, so correct, that I will have him read the letter, keeping your name secret (of course). If he agrees, and I see progress in him, he will owe it to you, and perhaps then I will tell him your name if you allow me to do so. – However, it must be admitted that the role in Lucia is not made for these means… There is rage, no love, and for a singer like that you need passion.

I hope that in Maria, you will find him the inimitable actor and singer! – See you next week, then –Monday D. Sebastian, and maybe Tuesday Maria – two shots simultaneously… If after these two shots I do not fall dead, I am entitled to immortality, or at least the invulnerability (forgive me this word if it is not French) of Achilles – Your devoted… at noon rehearsal of Maria.”

Portrait of Donizetti

Gaetano Donizetti

Though he had composed more than 30 operas by 1830, it was not until after the death of Vincenzo Bellini in 1835 and the retirement of Gioachino Rossini that Donizetti came to dominate Italian opera. Heavily influenced by Rossini, Donizetti’s operas showcased the talents of virtuoso singers, ranging from the comic Don Pasquale to the dramatic Roberto Devereux. In 1835, capitalizing on the public’s interest in Scottish culture, Donizetti composed the tragedy Lucia di Lammermoor, his best-known work, based on Sir Walter Scott’s 1819 novel The Bride of Lammermoor, which premiered in Naples in September 1835 (the same year another of his Scottish tragedies, Maria Stuarda [Mary Stuart], premiered at La Scala).

After royal censors banned his opera Poliuto, Donizetti moved to Paris, where he lived from 1838 until his failing health finally forced him to return to Italy. Our letter regards the November 14, 1843 staging of a revised version of Donizetti’s tragic opera Maria di Rohan at Paris’ Théâtre-Italien, the day after his grand opera Dom Sébastien, Roi de Portugal (Don Sebastian, King of Portugal) premiered at the Paris Opéra, which he refers to with trepidation as “two shots simultaneously.” The male vocalists in Maria di Rohan were tenor Lorenzo Salvi as Riccardo, baritone Giorgio Ronconi as Enrico, bass Giovanni Rizzi as the Viscount of Suze, and Nicola Ivanoff as Aubry. Both performances were successful. Dom Sébastien was the last opera Donizetti completed before succumbing to madness due to neurosyphilis.

Written on a folded sheet and in fine condition.

Superb ALS Mentioning “Lucia di Lammermoor” and Two Other Operas

$2640 net • item #22521

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