Antonio Carlos Gomes: Salvator Rosa (1874)

Opera in four acts. Running Time: 2 hours 34 minutes. Self portrait of Salvator Rosa, 1647.  Between the unparalleled (somewhat bizarre?) success of Il Guarany, the disaster of the first version of Fosca, and the fiasco that was Maria Tudor, Gomes did have one undisputed success with both the critics and the public in Salvator Rosa. Although it plays very fast and loose […]

Antonio Carlos Gomes: Il Guarany (1870)

Opera-Ballo in four acts. Running time: 2 hours 45 minutes. The opera with everything! Race relations, interracial love, colonialism, massive explosions involving huge amounts of TNT that blow up entire Portuguese castles in the Brazilian rainforest, yes, it is that one! It also has incredibly weird vocal casting: all but two of the nine soloists […]

Vincenzo Bellini: Zaira (1829)

Opera in two acts. Running Time: 2 hours 32 minutes. The first (and only) disaster in an otherwise brilliantly successful career, Zaira is the black mark in the oeuvre of Bellini. Much of its music was recycled to great success the following year in I Capuleti e i Montecchi, so was the failure of Parma as bad as its […]