Pietro Metastasio


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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

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.
The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
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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.
(It should be noted that Pietro Metastasio's youth and early career were spent in Rome and Naples during this period.) From 1710/11 onwards, Roman theatres fairly regularly produced two operas each year, both in carnival.
The doctor's corpulence is confirmed by Pietro Metastasio, who spent most of his life in Vienna and was also a close friend.
This work, Studies of the Eighteenth Century in Italy, brought to life for English readers the hitherto unexplored world of poet-librettist Pietro Metastasio and dramatists Carlo Goldoni and Carlo Gozzi.
Just in time for the 2012 Summer Olympics in London, the Naive label has conceived another modernday pasticcio, this one based on Pietro Metastasio's libretto, L'Olimpiade (The Olympic Games).
Or consider the origins of Mozart's two-act serenata ll Re Pastore (1775) in a three-act dramma per musica (1751) by Pietro Metastasio. Of course, as Stefanie Tcharos acknowledges, "categorizations and genre titles were seminal and effective," if only within their own cultural context and "in spite of their inability to hold any real consistency.
She describes 18th-century exoticism and China, China's journey from page to stage, China in early opera serie 1700-25, the enlightened imperial subject in Pietro Metastasio's 1752 L'eroe cinese, islands of opportunity in Carlo Goldoni's 1757 L'isola disabitata, rejecting false idols in Giambattista Lorenzi's 1767 L'idole cinese, and women traveling in new lands in Giovanni Bertati's 1771 L'inimico Distributed in the US by Associated University Presses.
Here and in subsequent notes, `BB' numbers refer to the numbering of the letters as printed in vols.3-5 of Tutte le opere di Pietro Metastasio, ed.
Questo scritto utilizzera essenzialmente l'Epistolario (1) di Pietro Metastasio (1698-1782), per analizzare il rapporto di amicizia col <<ciambellano imperial cesareo>> di Maria Teresa, il conte Daniele Florio (1710-1789), (2) <<poeta de' Sovrani, Sovrano de' poeti>>,(3) lungo tre direttrici, che saranno di seguito esplicitate e adeguatamente approfondite.