Tosca

Making it Real

Posted by Opera Gal in Productions, Tosca

Like many opera composers in the late 19th century, Giacomo Puccini aimed for a greater ‘truth in theatre’ than had existed in operas of the past century. The established bel canto opera tradition of the time included all kinds of conventions that resulted in operas focused more on the technical abilities of…

Tosca: Director’s Notes

Posted by Utah Opera in Online Learning, Productions, Tosca

When asked to write notes, directors usually comment on their concept or “take” on the piece. I am not shy about re-thinking the time or place of an opera to provide a fresh way of experiencing a work, but Puccini’s masterpiece needs no such re-thinking. The story, based on a…

Q & A with Michael Chioldi

Posted by Opera Gal in Productions, Program Notes, Tosca

How were you first introduced to opera?  Growing up in an Italian-American family outside of Pittsburgh, PA, I can remember my grandfather Guglielmo listening to the Texaco Metropolitan Opera radio broadcasts. The Chioldi family originates from Parma, Italy, and carries a very old Italian name. The Chioldis worked on facades of churches…

Tosca, Further Reading

Posted by Paul Dorgan in Online Learning, Productions, Tosca

READ ALL ABOUT IT! The creation of Tosca was relatively straightforward, so it’s “literature,” to use an academic term, is sparse. There are, though, some books you might like to delve into which will increase your knowledge of Puccini (assuming it needs increasing), of his…

The Making of Tosca

Posted by Paul Dorgan in Online Learning, Productions, Tosca

 TOSCA: RECIPE FOR SUCCESS. Too many cooks—at least five—were involved in the libretto of Puccini’s first great operatic success Manon Lescaut. For La Bohème the cooks were reduced to two: Giuseppe Giacosa and Luigi Illica, but Henry Mürger’s original ingredients (a novel and its stage adaptation)…

Tosca Recordings

Posted by Paul Dorgan in Online Learning, Productions, Tosca

TOSCA: SEEN AND HEARD After some 62 years the greatest performance ever recorded of Tosca remains the EMI studio recording from 1953, with Maria Callas in the title role; Giuseppe di Stefano, in glorious voice, as her lover Cavaradossi, and Tito Gobbi  as their implacable…

Tosca’s Historical Background

Posted by Paul Dorgan in Online Learning, Productions, Tosca

In Puccini’s opera Tosca, the first character we meet on-stage is an escaped prisoner. When the painter Mario Cavaradossi recognizes him shortly afterwards, he greets him thus: “Angelotti! The Consul of the defeated Roman Republic!” To quote Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia in a recent…