According to Grove Music, "when Admetus, King of Pherae in Thessaly, is ill and about to die an oracle announces that he will be saved if someone else is willing to die in his stead. His wife Alcestis displays her conjugal devotion by offering herself; she dies and Admetus recovers. Under the influence of tragédie lyrique, Calzabigi enriched his libretto with choruses, ballets and opportunities for impressive scenery."
In 1597, while Morley was negotiating for the patent, he wrote his musical treatise, A Plaine and Easie Introduction to Practicall Musicke. Although his preface contains the statement that he had “nothing better to do,” Morley probably knew publishing a treatise on the science of music would boost public interest in purchasing musical works. In addition, by publishing such a work, the English audience would view Morley as an authority in music (and he would become more likely to obtain the patent) (Smith, “Print Culture and the Elizabethan Composer,” 163). The work is practical, and is organized into three sections: teaching to sing simple song, teaching to sing two parts over a plainsong or ground, and teaching counterpoint.
After the resounding success of Iphigénie en Tauride (1779), Gluck set out to compose his last of the seven Paris operas, which turned out to be his final opera. Whereas Iphigénie en Tauride is often considered Gluck’s best opera, its immediate successor, Echo et Narcisse (1779) was ill-fated and quickly disappeared from the repertoire. Echo was premiered a mere four months after Tauride, and the Parisian audience was not prepared for the differences between these two operas. Although the music resembles that of his other French operas, the pastoral story lacks the dramatic intensity that viewers expected in a Gluck opera. Thus, the serene music—though it is at times quite beautiful— lacks dramatic impulse.
This is a ca. 1778 libretto for the burlesque opera in three acts "Momie" by a Jean Étiennethat Despréaux. The opera is a parody based on Leblanc du Roullet's libretto of "Iphigénie en Aulide," an opera by Christoph Willibald Gluck. The libretto includes the titles of the tunes at the opening of each scene. Page 6 of the library's copy is incorrectly numbered as page 9.
This is a ca. 1774 score of the opera "Alceste" by Anton Schweitzer based on a libretto by Christoph Wieland. The work premiered in Weimar in 1773. The plot was based on the Greek legend of Alcestis, on the subject of female virtue and conjugal love. The library's copy contains an engraved illustration that portrays a domestic scene. The score does not indicate the musical instruments and the music, which is notated in two, three or four staves, contains the German text underlaid with indication of the character who sings.
This is a copy of the second of three volumes of "Storia della musica" (Music History) by Giovanni Batista Martini. Each volume bears a different dedicatee: v.1: alla Sacra reale cattolica Maestà Maria Barbara; v.2: All'Altezza serenissima elettorale di Carlo Teodoro; v.3: a sua Altezza reale Don Ferdinando di Borbone. The t.p. of this volume is printed in red and black ink and decorated with a border that depicts various musical instruments. It also features an illustration of a minotaur and a young boy (presumably, the god Apollo) holding a lyre. This volume is divided in nine chapters and three dissertations. The start of each chapter and each dissertation features, within an ornamented oval-shaped frame, the notated music of a canon in a five-line staff with underlaid text taken from works by Hesiod, Homer, Anacreon, and Sophocles. The book contains maps of Greece and Asia Minor, as well as a table that summarizes the divisions of the breve and prolations translated to 18th century musical notation practice. Chapter 1 discusses the origins of music according to precepts passed down from antiquity and Greece as well as the theory of musical intervals. Chapter 2 discusses several Greek mythological figures and a history of the invention of the lyre per Homer. It also mentions Greek authors and use of instruments in Greek festivities. Chapter 3 presents stories of Greek gods and demigods by Ovid and Homer, among others. Chapter 4 includes Virgil's story of Orpheus (the son of Apollo) and his attempted rescue of his dead wife Eurydice from Hades. The chapter contains references to the role of music in that story. Chapter 5 is about the role of music in the cult of Cybele (in Greek mythology, the mother of all gods). It also mentions names of people mentioned by Plutarch ...
This is the 1773 edition of the libretto to the comic opera and vaudeville, "Pigmalion" by Charles-François Panard and Thomas Laffichard. The opera premiered at the Paris Opéra Comique in 1735 . The plot is an adaptation of Ovid's story of Pygmalion, a sculptor who fell in love with a statue that he carved. Operatic and ballet representation of the subject of Pigmalion (or Pygmalion) became famous after Antoine Houdar de la Motte's entrée "La sculpture" for the ballet "Le triomphe des arts," which staged in 1700 at Académie Royale de Musique with music by Michel de la Barre. Page 16 of this edition was incorrectly numbered as number 10.
This collection of opera arias is scored for either one, two, or three voices with continuo (with figures). Some songs call for an obbligato violin. An alphabetical table of contents is located at the end of the volume.
This one-act opera to a libretto by Marmontel is dedicated "a son Altesse Royale Monseigneur Le Prince Charles de Pologne." This full score features a catalogue of Grétry's music on the verso of the title page. The opera was premiered in Paris on 19 February 1770 at the Comédie-Italiènne.
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