Gian Carlo Menotti

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Menotti, Gian Carlo


Born July 7, 1911, in Cadegliano, Italy. American composer; founder of the modern American opera.

Although he has lived in the USA since 1928, Menotti has retained his Italian citizenship. He studied at the Milan Conservatory (1923-27) and at the Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia (1927-33), where he began teaching in 1941. Menotti wrote the librettos for most of his operas, which are stylistically reminiscent of verismo. However, he has also composed atonal music.

Menotti was influenced by Verdi and Puccini, as well as by M. P. Mussorgsky, from whom he borrowed the practice of writing recitatives to express tense situations in the plot. Many of Menotti’s operas are distinguished by a combination of drama and humor. They are written for a small orchestra (an ensemble of soloists) and do not call for a chorus. Among his best operas are the one-act opera buffa Amelia Goes to the Ball (1936, Philadelphia), The Old Maid and the Thief (produced for radio, 1939; 1941, Philadelphia), The Island God (1942, New York), and The Medium, the most important production of which was staged in 1946 in New York. Also among his most outstanding operas are The Telephone (1947, New York), Amahl and the Night Visitors (television, 1951), The Consul (1950), Martin’s Lie (1964), and The Most Important Man in the World (1971). His other compositions include the ballet Sebastian (1943), the oratorio Death of the Bishop From Brindisi (1963), the symphonic poem Apocalypse (1951), concerti for piano (1945) and violin (1952), a triple concerto (1970), chamber ensembles, and various works for piano.

References in periodicals archive ?
Thanks to the festival of Gian Carlo Menotti, the town of Spoleto - "this once-dead little city now alive with music, dance and poetry," in the composer's words - has bloomed just as theatrically.
The grounds, at the foot of the Lammermuir Hills, 21 miles from Edinburgh, was bought in the 1970s by the late Italian- American composer Gian Carlo Menotti and is currently owned by his son Francis.
Storke commissioned Gian Carlo Menotti to write a television opera in 1979.
They flock to this charming harbor city, known in the eighteenth century as the Paris of the South, to attend the Spoleto Festival USA, founded by composer Gian Carlo Menotti as a complement to his Festival dei Due Mondi (Festival of the Two Worlds) in Italy.
Goya has been the subject of hugely unsuccessful pieces by Gian Carlo Menotti and Maury Yeston.
Composer Gian Carlo Menotti infused the sweet but often humorous one-act opera with lots of lovely melodies.
In addition, the collection includes correspondence from many of the twentieth century's major musical figures, such as Samuel Barber, John Barbirolli, Bernard Berenson, Ernest Bloch, Katherine Dunham, Eileen Farrell, Jascha Heifetz, Erich Leinsdorf, Lotte Lehmann, Gian Carlo Menotti, Dimitri Mitropoulos, Hans Moldenhauer, Pierre Monteux, Charles Munch, Andre Previn, Harold Schonberg, Andres Segovia, Nicolas Slonimsky, Leopold Stokowski, Arturo Toscanini, and many others.
Halifax Summer Opera Workshop produced two operas written two centuries apart for its 2008 season--The Consul by Gian Carlo Menotti and Le nozze di Figaro by Mozart.
Mass Theatrica is looking to cast all roles, except Baba, in "The Medium," by Gian Carlo Menotti.
Twenty-five years ago, when Early Music published its first issue, "early music" seemed like a cause worth fighting for, a mission to redeem the great works of the past from the abuse of unenlightened performers who sang Carlo Gesualdo with a vocalism more appropriate to Gian Carlo Menotti, who played Johann Sebastian Bach on the piano - a journey into the unlit corners of the repertory to return with pearls unheard for centuries.
A Hand of Bridge,'' composed in 1959 with a libretto by Gian Carlo Menotti, is one of the shortest operas in the repertoire (9 minutes).
Born in Wisconsin in 1926, Hoiby began composing when he was a child, later studying composition with Gian Carlo Menotti at the Curtis Institute.