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Divas and ScholarsPerforming Italian Opera$
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Philip Gossett

Print publication date: 2006

Print ISBN-13: 9780226304823

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: March 2013

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226304885.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM CHICAGO SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.chicago.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of Chicago Press, 2020. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in CHSO for personal use.date: 28 May 2020

Higher and Lower

Higher and Lower

Transposing Bellini and Donizetti

(p.332) 10 Higher and Lower
Divas and Scholars
University of Chicago Press

Only rarely can composer-generated transposition be found in Rossini's operas, but the problem of transposition has broader importance when the operas of Verdi are considered, and it becomes fundamental for those of Bellini and Donizetti. Although most of Verdi's modifications in tonality took place as he composed, Bellini transposed his own music constantly, during rehearsals, after an opera's premiere, or when adapting the music for different singers. Bellini also made a few emendations in the copyist's transposition of the orchestral parts, but his corrections were insufficient. Just as Bellini's most famous single passage in his most enduringly successful opera was written in a different key from the one people are used to hearing, so were the three entire pieces in Donizetti's masterpiece, Lucia di Lammermoor, including both solo numbers sung by Lucia herself and her duet with her brother, Enrico.

Keywords:   Bellini, Donizetti, opera, transposition, tonality, copyist, Lucia, Enrico

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