|Saverio Mercadante. Donna Caritea. Opera. Vocal Score. Text in Italian.|
|Elibron Classics, 2002, 248 pages|
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|Saverio Mercadante (1795 - 1870), list of works|
|Son of a housemaid who had gotten herself "knocked up" by the master, Saverio was officially introduced into the Mercadante household when his father "adopted" him. The family's fortunes soon declined, and Saverio spent his early years in poverty anyway. Fortunately, his father soon gained a sure enough footing to buy his son music lessons. Mercadante's first opera premiered when he was 24, and it so impressed the reigning Bourbon monarch that the young composer was invited into the king's box. For a while, it looked as though the young genius would be an important musical figure in the restored monarchy, but he made a huge political misstep by writing an opera about the life of Mary Stuart. It took Mercadante a long time to recover, but recover he did: a star composer once again upon the premiere of Donna Caritea, he composed a string of successes and conducted performances across Europe. Eventually, he became the director of the Naples Conservatory; though struck in later years by blindness, he continued to teach composition by dictating to his students.|
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Music for Stage and Film: Operas