Cenerentola, ossia La bontÓ in trionfo
[Cinderella, or Goodness Triumphant]
Dramma giocoso in two
Rome - Teatro Valle
25 January 1817
Critical Edition by
FONDAZIONE ROSSINI PESARO 1998
DON RAMIRO, Prince of Salerno, tenor
DANDINI, his valet, bass
DON MAGNIFICO, baron of Monte Fiascone, bass, father of
CLORINDA, mezzo-soprano, [and of]
ANGELINA (known as CENERENTOLA), step-daughter of Don Magnifico, mezzo-soprano
ALIDORO, philosopher, Don Ramiro's teacher, bass
Male chorus of courtiers
The scene is partly in Don Magnifico's old palace and partly in the Prince's pleasure house a half mile away.
Instrumentation: 2 Flutes/2 Piccolos, 2 Oboes, 2
Clarinets, 2 Bassoons, 2 Horns, 2 Trumpets, 1 Trombones, Strings,
Performance time: 2h 30m
The nature of the libretto of La Cenerentola, derived ultimately from the French tale recorded by Charles Perrault, makes this opera significantly different from Rossini's earlier comic operas. Although Don Magnifico and Dandini are comic characters in the great Italian tradition, the principal characters - Cinderella herself and Prince Ramiro - are sentimental, not comic. Thus Rossini adapts not only the popular semiseria genre but also the exalted colortura style of opera seria for his heroine, who is transformed from a scorned stepchild to a celebrated princess, not by magic but by love and by her own innate goodness.
In the original Roman version, prepared in great haste, a collaborator, presumably Luca Agolini, wrote the secco recitatives. He also composed three numbers: an aria for Alidoro ("Vasto teatro Ŕ il mondo"), an opening chorus for Act II, and an aria for Clorinda before the Finale ("Sventurata! me credea"). For a Roman revival in 1821 Rossini replaced Alidoro's aria with a new composition, "LÓ del ciel nell'arcano profondo." The chorus soon was eliminated from revivals, but Clorinda's aria remained and underwent various revisions in other productions. The critical edition provides all the music for the original version, including major variants of Clorinda's aria, and in appendices provides the Rossinian aria for Alidoro as well as Rossini's own variations for Cenerentola's final Rondo.
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