The origin of the manuscript is clear, since at the foot of the first page Cortot has written: "This version of scenes from Gluck's Alceste combining the Italian Alceste with the French Alceste was probably undertaken for Pauline Viardot. This manuscript was sold by Paul Viardot [ 2 ] to the person from whom I had it. The seventy-five-page manuscript is in Berlioz's hand throughout, apart from the pagination and certain annotations. The movements appear in the following order: No. It is striking that two of the six movements which make up the Viardot manuscript show borrowings from the Italian version translated into French by Berlioz.
Three of the six, furthermore, have been transposed down a minor third: No. That edition in fact contains most of the distinctive elements of the Viardot manuscript. The question of the precise purpose of the manuscript remains open. When and for what occasion was it prepared? What light does it shed on Berlioz's lifelong opposition to those who treated what Gluck wrote with anything short of the most scrupulous respect?
To answer these questions we must examine the manuscript in the light of Berlioz's writings on Gluck. In the almost total disappearance of Gluck's operas caused Berlioz to wonder which voices would be most appropriate for the principal roles of these operas. He evoked traditions "which are vanishing daily, without which this music is almost incomprehensible. On November 25, , he gave a "Grand vocal and instrumental concert" in the Grande Salle des Menus Plaisirs, in which a revised fragment from Alceste was played.
Alizard, Mlle. Yet the incipit in French "Ombres! Berlioz had already, no doubt, assembled a score of this sequence of pieces. Nathan-Treillet and M. But this item was not performed, owing to the soprano's illness.
Alceste : (). Divinités du Styx : aria for mezzo-soprano (Musical score, ) [scabtecatsclusso.gq]
This was probably the piece later to be No. In the following years, no doubt discouraged by the failure of all the singers he had engaged to sing Alceste, Berlioz seems to have reverted to the French version of the opera. Please enter your name. The E-mail message field is required.
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Alceste : Series: Operatic anthology, arias and duets , ser. Subjects Operas -- Excerpts -- Vocal scores with piano. Songs Medium voice with orchestra -- Vocal scores with piano.
Alceste : (1767). Divinités du Styx : aria for mezzo-soprano
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