Metastasio, Pietro

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Metastasio, Pietro

(pyĕ`trō mātästä`zēō), 1698–1782, Italian poet and librettist, whose original name was Antonio Bonaventura Trapassi. A prodigy at poetic improvisation, he became court poet at Vienna in 1729. He wrote melodious lyric verse; a masque, Gli orti esperidi (1721–22); and librettos of many operas, including Didone abbandonata (1724), Artaserse (1730, tr. 1761), La clemenza di Tito (1734, tr. 1811), and Il re pastore (1751, tr. 1765). These librettos were set to music by many composers, including Gluck, Handel, Mozart, Pergolesi, and Rossini. Metastasio, with Apostolo Zeno, whom he succeeded as imperial poet laureate at Vienna, created the rigid opera seria (see operaopera,
drama set to music. Characteristics

The libretto may be serious or comic, although neither form necessarily excludes elements of the other. Opera differs from operetta in its musical complexity and usually in its subject matter.
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). His melodrama Attilio Regolo (1750) is generally considered his masterpiece.

Bibliography

See his Dramas and Other Poems (3 vol., tr. 1800).

Metastasio, Pietro

 

(pseudonym of Pietro Trapassi). Born Jan. 3, 1698, in Rome; died Apr. 12, 1782, in Vienna. Italian poet and opera librettist.

In 1730, Metastasio became court poet of Vienna. His opera libretti are classical examples of opera seria. Almost all 18th-century composers who wrote operas on historical and mytho-logical themes—as well as composers of pastorals, serenades, and cantatas—used his texts, which were noted for their lofty imagery, subtle depiction of the lyrical states of the heroes, poetic refinement of language, and compositional balance.

Among Metastasio’s 27 opera libretti (dramma per musica) that were repeatedly set to music were Didone abbandonata (1724), Siroe (1726), Ezio (1728), Semiramide riconosciuta (1729), Alessandro neWIndie (1729), Artaserse (1730), Demetrio (1731), Demofoonte (1733), La clemenza di Tito (1734), Giro riconosciuto (1736), Temistocle (1736) Antigone (1743), and I! re pastore (1751).

REFERENCES

Stendhal. “Zhizneopisaniia Gaidna, Motsarta i Metastazio.” Sobr. soch., vol. 8. Moscow, 1959. (Translated from French.)
Russo, L. Metastasio. Ban, 1921.
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Dramma per musica in drei Akten von Pietro Metastasio.
The latter quality was inextricably linked with opera seria and no more so than in the celebrated libretti of Pietro Metastasio, which were set time and time again by composers throughout the Italian peninsula and wherever the Italian style reigned supreme.
The opposite case is also frequent: authors considered great in their own time are then forgotten by posterity, as we see for Marino or Metastasio.
More Handel with "Let the bright Seraphim", Miah Persson the agile if slightly aloof soprano, and then a Mendelssohn rarity, the concert-aria Infelice, a late setting of Metastasio, the 18th-century's favourite operatic librettist, delivered with dramatic involvement now by Persson, and with wonderful concertolike timbres from obbligato violinist Marc Bouchkov.
In the main plot the ostensible hero is Wolftein, though its prime mover is Ginotti, the obscure symbolic figure who sanctions Wolftein's poisoning of the bandit Cavigni in order to obtain the lovely Megalena de Metastasio.
Set to a fairly sober-sided, allegorical libretto by Metastasio, it portrays the 2nd-century B.
In 1733, the opera L'Olimpiade, whose libretto was written by Pietro Metastasio, poet in residence to the Habsburg Court, was first performed to great acclaim in Vienna; it later met with similar success in other European capitals, including London.
Metastasio e, infatti, fra i primi ad usare "l'imminenza del viaggio come espediente drammatico" (158), nello sviluppo dell'azione.
The show is being presented by Italy's award winning Teatro di Piazza o d'Occasione's visual theatre company and the Teatro Metastasio Stabile della Toscana.
Metastasio might have been describing the work of his contemporary Giambattista Tiepolo, whose art blended history, mythology, legend, and scripture in a grand manner.
Volumes iii and iv of the Theatro Comico Portuguez contain operas by Antonio Jose's imitators, performed at the Teatro do Bairro Alto or the Teatro da Mouraria prior to 1742, (6) and volume iii includes the first example of an adaptation 'ao gosto dos portugueses' [according to Portuguese taste] of a text by Pietro Metastasio (1698-1782), Austrian court poet and paradigmatic librettist of Italian opere serie.
Dodwell, for example, in 1805 was impressed when he meets a Mesologgian who can recite Tasso, Metastasio and other Italian poets, but is aghast when he cannot recite Homer.