Afternoon at the Opera


Gioacchino Rossini, 1865

Gioacchino Rossini, 1865 By Étienne Carjat -, Public Domain,

Rossini’s Tancredi was first produced at La Fenice in Venice in February, 1813. Rossini was only twenty years old, and this opera established the young composer as the leading Italian opera composer of his day. As the librettist for Tancredi, Gaetano Rossi, would write: “With this opera, Rossini rose to glory.” The original libretto of Tancredi had a happy ending, as was the custom in Venice at the time. Within a few months, however, Rossini had an alternate ending written which more closely emulated Voltaire’s play. This is the ending which is now regularly performed and the version we will hear today. Opera Southwest’s production was the New Mexico premiere of this opera. Tancredi is sung by Heather Johnson and Amenaide is sung by Lindsay Ohse. The conductor is Opera Southwest’s Artistic Director and Principal Conductor Anthony Barrese.