Academic year
2021/2022 Syllabus of previous years
Official course title
Course code
FT0504 (AF:331875 AR:190146)
On campus classes
ECTS credits
6 out of 12 of HISTORY OF MUSIC
Degree level
Bachelor's Degree Programme
Educational sector code
1st Term
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The course aims to introduce attending students to the topical moments of musical theater.
The student will acquire basic notions on musical theater, both formal and historical; each work will be placed in the artistic context of its time.
The student should inquire about the main operatic titles, especially the seventeenth and twentieth centuries, using chronologies and he will find on the course homepage.
Verdi in Venice 1844-1857

Venice and its most representative theater, La Fenice, was one of the absolute protagonists of the golden century of Italian melodrama, almost until the sixties of the nineteenth century. This primacy is due to intelligent administration by the owner company, which has been able to make use of top-level entrepreneurs, able to recruit the best interpreters on the market. The Gran Teatro La Fenice directly or consolidated the fame of the most important composers, from Gioachino Rossini to Vincenzo Bellini, Gaetano Donizetti and others.
The most important bet was, however, that of asking an author fresh from the first La Scala successes for a new work: it was Ernani, on March 3, 1844, who opened an extraordinary creative season, developed with Attila (1846), Rigoletto (1851), La traviata (1853), and closed with Simone Boccanegra (1857). It can be said that the most innovative Verdi was born in Venice.

The bibliography shown here is intended as an indication to address the problem; specific references will be published in the exam program. For the purposes of preparation, the candidate should read essays that allow to understand the historical condition of the opera house, such as the book by FABRIZIO DELLA SETA, Italia e Francia nell’Ottocento, Torino, Turin, EDT, 1993 and that by JOHN ROSSELLI, Music and Musicians in Nineteenth-Century Italy, Cambridge University Press,1991. For the general arrangement see The Cambridge History of Nineteenth-Century Music, ed. by Jim Samson, Cambridge, Cambridge University Press, 2001 («The Cambridge History of Music»), passim.

MARCELLO CONATI, La bottega della musica: Verdi e La Fenice, Milano, Il Saggiatore, 1983.
«La Fenice prima dell’opera»: Attila, 3, 2004; Il trovatore, 5, 2011; La traviata, 2, 2002-2003, versione 1853, 1, 2004-2005, vers. 1854; Simone Boccanegra, 1, 2014-2015, vers. 1881.
MICHELE GIRARDI, «Ernani», il tempo degli ideali, in Ernani di Verdi, Parma, Verdi Festival, 2005, pp. 51-59

Further information can be found on the course page.

Oral examinatione: interview on the topics discussed in the course
Lectures, with the help of all the tools of computer science, to propose material in video, diagrams, read and discuss on-line bibliography, musical examples also on the piano.
During the first lesson the articulation of the course will be illustrated. Presence is recommended.

Ca ’Foscari applies Italian law (Law 17/1999; Law 170/2010) for the support and accommodation services available to students with disabilities or specific learning disabilities. If you have a motor, visual, hearing or other disability (Law 17/1999) or a specific learning disorder (Law 170/2010) and you require support (classroom assistance, technological aids for carrying out exams or exams individualized, accessible format material, note retrieval, specialist tutoring to support the study, interpreters or other) contact the Disability and DSA office
Definitive programme.
Last update of the programme: 10/10/2021