Vincenzo Bellini

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Bellini, Vincenzo

(vēnchān`tsō bĕl-lē`nē), 1801–35, Italian opera composer. He acquired his musical training from his grandfather and father, and began composing religious and secular music in his childhood. His first opera, Adelson e Salvini, was successfully performed in 1825. His most celebrated works are the operas La Sonnambula and Norma (both 1831). In their profusely melodic style they exemplify the bel canto tradition of the 18th cent., and their roles demand great virtuosity of the singers. Bellini's last opera, I Puritani (1835), was influenced by the dramatic style of French grand opera. Unlike that of his immediate predecessors, Rossini and Donizetti, his operatic output was small. It was characterized by careful composition, great attention to the relationship between words and music, and an originality of harmony that gave rise to his music's sensual, ecstatic quality. He greatly influenced the work of Verdi.


See study by H. Weinstock (1971).

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 It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Bellini, Vincenzo


Born Nov. 3, 1801, in Catania, Sicily; died Sept. 23, 1835, in Puteaux, near Paris. Italian composer.

Bellini came from a family of musicians (his father was a conductor; his grandfather was an organist and composer). He studied at the San Sebastiano Conservatory in Naples. Bellini wrote 11 operas—I Capuleti ed i Montecchi (1830, Fenice Theater, Venice), La Sonnambula (1831, Carcano Theater, Milan), and I Puritani (1835, Théâtre Italien, Paris) were very successful. His most important work is the opera Norma (1831, La Scala, Milan).

The productions of Bellini’s operas were often accompanied by patriotic demonstrations. At the time of the growth of the national liberation movement in Italy, the audience found a timely political content in his operas. Bellini was the greatest master of the Italian bel canto style. The basis of his music is clear vocal melody—fluid, plastic, and distinguished by continuity of development. The outstanding Italian singers perfected their artistry by performing in Bellini’s works.


Serov, A. “Bellini, ego deiatel’nost’ i znachenie.” Panteon, 1854, no. 5.
Konen, V. I storiia zarubezhnoi muzyki, 2nd ed., issue 3. Moscow, 1965. Pages 372–75.
Pougin, A. Bellini, sa vie et ses oeuvres. Paris, 1868.
Pizzetti, J. Vincenzo Bellini, 2nd ed. Milan, 1936.
The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
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References in periodicals archive ?
The composer Vincenzo Bellini's score tells the story of the Druid high priestess Norma, and her forbidden love for Roman consul Pollione.
A landmark revival of the opera Norma by Vincenzo Bellini was presented by the Metropolitan Opera, with Joan Sutherland in the title role and Marilyn Horne in her Met debut singing Adalgisa.
The 2013 production of Vincenzo Bellini's opera by the Fondazione Arena Di Verona, which opened the ROHM with Turandot in 2011, has clever sets and a fantastic cast to bring the story to life once more.
After all, the prolific playwright's works include "Master Class," "The Lisbon Traviata" and "Golden Age," a new play that takes a backstage peek at Vincenzo Bellini's "I Puritani."
Other performances planned for Eugene this year include Jules Massenet's "Griselidis" on May 3; Vincenzo Bellini's "I Capuleti e i Montecchi" on June 21; Alfredo Catalani's "La Wally" on Sept.
Indeed, until fairly recently scholars tended to draw a straight line of influence between the two, often overlooking the contributions in form and function by contemporary composers such as Gaetano Donizetti and Vincenzo Bellini, among the other forgotten voices.
Muscat: For the first time, Vincenzo Bellini's opera I Capuleti E I Montecchi, the story of Romeo and Juliet, will be performed in Oman at the Royal Opera House Muscat from March 19 to 21.