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Old March 16th 11, 06:38 AM posted to rec.bicycles.soc,rec.bicycles.misc,
Edward Dolan
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Default Ed Dolan & Melanie

"Tēm ShermĒnT °_°" " wrote in
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On 3/15/2011 9:57 PM, Edward Dolan wrote:

Gluck reformed opera which badly needed reforming because of types like

Better: Too bad he was too
drunk to remember to tie his shoes.

You obviously have no conception of what is meant by the phrase "Gluck
reformed opera".

Here is the pertinent passage from the article on Gluck on Wikipedia:

"Gluck had long pondered the fundamental problem of form and content in
opera. He thought both of the main Italian operatic genres - opera buffa and
opera seria - had strayed too far from what opera should really be and
seemed unnatural. Opera buffa had long lost its original freshness. Its
jokes were threadbare and the repetition of the same characters made them
seem no more than stereotypes. In opera seria the singing was devoted to
superficial effects and the content was uninteresting and fossilised. As in
opera buffa, the singers were effectively absolute masters of the stage and
the music, decorating the vocal lines so floridly that audiences could no
longer recognise the original melody. Gluck wanted to return opera to its
origins, focusing on human drama and passions and making words and music of
equal importance.
In Vienna, Gluck met likeminded figures in the operatic world: Count Giacomo
Durazzo, the head of the court theatre, who was a passionate admirer of
French stage music; the librettist Ranieri de' Calzabigi, who wanted to
attack the dominance of Metastasian opera seria; the innovative
choreographer Gasparo Angiolini; and the London-trained castrato Gaetano

The first result of the new thinking was Gluck's reformist ballet Don Juan,
but a more important work was soon to follow. On 5 October 1762, Orfeo ed
Euridice was given its first performance, with music by Gluck to words by
Calzabigi. The dances were arranged by Angiolini and the title role was
taken by Guadagni. Orfeo, which has never left the standard repertory,
showed the beginnings of Gluck's reforms. His idea was to make the drama of
the work more important than the star singers who performed it, and to do
away with dry recitative (recitativo secco, accompanied only by continuo)
that broke up the action. The more flowing and dramatic style which resulted
has been seen as a precursor to the music dramas of Richard Wagner.

Gluck and Calzabigi followed Orfeo with Alceste (1767) and Paride ed Elena
(1770), pushing their innovations even further. Calzabigi wrote a preface to
Alceste, which Gluck signed, setting out the principles of their reforms."

Ed Dolan the Great - Minnesota
Saint Edward the Great - Order of the Perpetual Sorrows - Minnesota


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