Gaetano Donizetti

Gaetano Donizetti

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Domenico Gaetano Maria Donizetti (doˈmeːniko gaeˈtaːno maˈɾia doniˈdzetti) (29 November 1797 – 8 April 1848) was an Italian composer from Bergamo
Bergamo
Bergamo is a town and comune in Lombardy, Italy, about 40 km northeast of Milan. The comune is home to over 120,000 inhabitants. It is served by the Orio al Serio Airport, which also serves the Province of Bergamo, and to a lesser extent the metropolitan area of Milan...

, Lombardy. His best-known works are the operas L'elisir d'amore
L'elisir d'amore
L'elisir d'amore is an opera by the Italian composer Gaetano Donizetti. It is a melodramma giocoso in two acts...

 (1832), Lucia di Lammermoor
Lucia di Lammermoor
Lucia di Lammermoor is a dramma tragico in three acts by Gaetano Donizetti. Salvadore Cammarano wrote the Italian language libretto loosely based upon Sir Walter Scott's historical novel The Bride of Lammermoor....

 (1835), and Don Pasquale
Don Pasquale
Don Pasquale is an opera buffa, or comic opera, in three acts by Gaetano Donizetti. The librettist Giovanni Ruffini wrote the Italian language libretto after Angelo Anelli's libretto for Stefano Pavesi's Ser Marcantonio ....

 (1843), all in Italian, and the French operas La favorite
La favorite
La favorite is an opera in four acts by Gaetano Donizetti to a French-language libretto by Alphonse Royer and Gustave Vaëz, based on the play Le comte de Comminges by Baculard d'Arnaud...

 and La fille du régiment
La fille du régiment
La fille du régiment is an opéra comique in two acts by Gaetano Donizetti. It was written while the composer was living in Paris, with a French libretto by Jules-Henri Vernoy de Saint-Georges and Jean-François Bayard.La figlia del reggimento, a slightly different Italian-language version , was...

 (both from 1840). Along with Vincenzo Bellini
Vincenzo Bellini
Vincenzo Salvatore Carmelo Francesco Bellini was an Italian opera composer. His greatest works are I Capuleti ed i Montecchi , La sonnambula , Norma , Beatrice di Tenda , and I puritani...

 and Gioachino Rossini, he was a leading composer of bel canto
Bel canto
Bel canto , along with a number of similar constructions , is an Italian opera term...

 opera.

Biography



The youngest of three sons, Donizetti was born in 1797 in Bergamo's Borgo Canale quarter located just outside the city walls. His family was very poor with no tradition of music, his father being the caretaker of the town pawnshop. Nevertheless, Donizetti received some musical instruction from Simon Mayr
Simon Mayr
Johann Simon Mayr , also known in Italian as Giovanni Simone Mayr or Simone Mayr was a German composer.- Life :...

, a German composer of internationally successful operas who had become maestro di cappella at Bergamo's principal church in 1802.

Donizetti was not especially successful as a choirboy, but in 1806 he was one of the first pupils to be enrolled at the Lezioni Caritatevoli school, founded by Mayr, in Bergamo through a full scholarship. He received detailed training in the arts of fugue
Fugue
In music, a fugue is a compositional technique in two or more voices, built on a subject that is introduced at the beginning in imitation and recurs frequently in the course of the composition....

 and counterpoint
Counterpoint
In music, counterpoint is the relationship between two or more voices that are independent in contour and rhythm and are harmonically interdependent . It has been most commonly identified in classical music, developing strongly during the Renaissance and in much of the common practice period,...

, and it was here that he launched his operatic career. After some minor compositions under the commission of Paolo Zanca, Donizetti wrote his fourth opera, Zoraida di Granata
Zoraida di Granata
Zoraida di Granata is a melodramma eroico , in two acts by Gaetano Donizetti...

. This work impressed Domenico Barbaia
Domenico Barbaia
Domenico Barbaia was an Italian impresario.An energetic man, Barbaia, who was born in Milan, began his career by running a coffee shop...

, a prominent theatre manager, and Donizetti was offered a contract to compose in Naples
Naples
Naples is a city in Southern Italy, situated on the country's west coast by the Gulf of Naples. Lying between two notable volcanic regions, Mount Vesuvius and the Phlegraean Fields, it is the capital of the region of Campania and of the province of Naples...

. Writing in Rome and Milan
Milan
Milan is the second-largest city in Italy and the capital city of the region of Lombardy and of the province of Milan. The city proper has a population of about 1.3 million, while its urban area, roughly coinciding with its administrative province and the bordering Province of Monza and Brianza ,...

 in addition to Naples, Donizetti achieved some popular success in the 1820s (although critics were often unimpressed), but was not well known internationally until 1830, when his Anna Bolena
Anna Bolena
Anna Bolena is a tragedia lirica, or opera, in two acts by Gaetano Donizetti. Felice Romani wrote the Italian libretto after Ippolito Pindemonte's Enrico VIII ossia Anna Bolena and Alessandro Pepoli's Anna Bolena, both telling of the life of Anne Boleyn...

 was premiered in Milan. He almost instantly became famous throughout Europe. L'elisir d'amore
L'elisir d'amore
L'elisir d'amore is an opera by the Italian composer Gaetano Donizetti. It is a melodramma giocoso in two acts...

, a comedy produced in 1832, came soon after, and is deemed one of the masterpieces of 19th-century opera buffa
Opera buffa
Opera buffa is a genre of opera. It was first used as an informal description of Italian comic operas variously classified by their authors as ‘commedia in musica’, ‘commedia per musica’, ‘dramma bernesco’, ‘dramma comico’, ‘divertimento giocoso' etc...

 (as is his Don Pasquale
Don Pasquale
Don Pasquale is an opera buffa, or comic opera, in three acts by Gaetano Donizetti. The librettist Giovanni Ruffini wrote the Italian language libretto after Angelo Anelli's libretto for Stefano Pavesi's Ser Marcantonio ....

, written for Paris in 1843). Shortly after L'elisir d'amore, Donizetti composed Lucia di Lammermoor
Lucia di Lammermoor
Lucia di Lammermoor is a dramma tragico in three acts by Gaetano Donizetti. Salvadore Cammarano wrote the Italian language libretto loosely based upon Sir Walter Scott's historical novel The Bride of Lammermoor....

, based on the Sir Walter Scott novel The Bride of Lammermoor
The Bride of Lammermoor
The Bride of Lammermoor is a historical novel by Sir Walter Scott, set in Scotland in the reign of Queen Anne . The novel tells of a tragic love affair between Lucy Ashton and her family's enemy Edgar Ravenswood. Scott indicated the plot was based on an actual incident...

. It became his most famous opera, and one of the high points of the bel canto
Bel canto
Bel canto , along with a number of similar constructions , is an Italian opera term...

 tradition, reaching stature similar to Bellini
Vincenzo Bellini
Vincenzo Salvatore Carmelo Francesco Bellini was an Italian opera composer. His greatest works are I Capuleti ed i Montecchi , La sonnambula , Norma , Beatrice di Tenda , and I puritani...

's Norma
Norma (opera)
Norma is a tragedia lirica or opera in two acts by Vincenzo Bellini with libretto by Felice Romani after Norma, ossia L'infanticidio by Alexandre Soumet. First produced at La Scala on December 26, 1831, it is generally regarded as an example of the supreme height of the bel canto tradition...

.

After the success of Lucrezia Borgia
Lucrezia Borgia (opera)
Lucrezia Borgia is a melodramma, or opera, in a prologue and two acts by Gaetano Donizetti. Felice Romani wrote the Italian libretto after the play by Victor Hugo, in its turn after the legend of Lucrezia Borgia. Lucrezia Borgia was first performed on 26 December 1833 at La Scala, Milan with...

 (1833) consolidated his reputation, Donizetti followed the paths of both Rossini and Bellini by visiting Paris, but his opera Marin Faliero
Marino Faliero (opera)
Marino Faliero is a tragedia lirica, or tragic opera, in three acts by Gaetano Donizetti. Giovanni Emanuele Bidéra wrote the Italian libretto, with revisions by Agostino Ruffini, after Casimir Delavigne's play...

 suffered by comparison with Bellini's I puritani
I puritani
I puritani is an opera in three acts by Vincenzo Bellini. It was his last opera. Its libretto is by Count Carlo Pepoli, based on Têtes rondes et Cavaliers by Jacques-François Ancelot and Joseph Xavier Saintine, which is in turn based on Walter Scott's novel Old Mortality. It was first produced at...

, and he returned to Naples to produce his already-mentioned masterpiece, Lucia di Lammermoor
Lucia di Lammermoor
Lucia di Lammermoor is a dramma tragico in three acts by Gaetano Donizetti. Salvadore Cammarano wrote the Italian language libretto loosely based upon Sir Walter Scott's historical novel The Bride of Lammermoor....

. As Donizetti's fame grew, so did his engagements, as he was further hired to write in both France and Italy. In 1838, he moved to Paris after the Italian censor objected to the production of Poliuto (on the grounds that such a sacred subject was inappropriate for the stage); there he wrote La fille du régiment
La fille du régiment
La fille du régiment is an opéra comique in two acts by Gaetano Donizetti. It was written while the composer was living in Paris, with a French libretto by Jules-Henri Vernoy de Saint-Georges and Jean-François Bayard.La figlia del reggimento, a slightly different Italian-language version , was...

, which became another success.

As a conductor, he led the premiere of Rossini's Stabat Mater
Stabat Mater (Rossini)
Rossini composed his Stabat Mater late in his career after retiring from the composition of opera. He began the work in 1831 but did not complete it until 1841.-Composition:...

.

Donizetti's wife, Virginia Vasselli, gave birth to three children, none of whom survived. Within a year of his parents' deaths, his wife died from cholera
Cholera
Cholera is an infection of the small intestine that is caused by the bacterium Vibrio cholerae. The main symptoms are profuse watery diarrhea and vomiting. Transmission occurs primarily by drinking or eating water or food that has been contaminated by the diarrhea of an infected person or the feces...

. By 1843, Donizetti exhibited symptoms of syphilis
Syphilis
Syphilis is a sexually transmitted infection caused by the spirochete bacterium Treponema pallidum subspecies pallidum. The primary route of transmission is through sexual contact; however, it may also be transmitted from mother to fetus during pregnancy or at birth, resulting in congenital syphilis...

 and probable bipolar disorder
Bipolar disorder
Bipolar disorder or bipolar affective disorder, historically known as manic–depressive disorder, is a psychiatric diagnosis that describes a category of mood disorders defined by the presence of one or more episodes of abnormally elevated energy levels, cognition, and mood with or without one or...

. After being institutionalized in 1845, he was sent to Paris, where he could be cared for. After visits from friends, including Giuseppe Verdi
Giuseppe Verdi
Giuseppe Fortunino Francesco Verdi was an Italian Romantic composer, mainly of opera. He was one of the most influential composers of the 19th century...

, Donizetti was sent back to Bergamo, his hometown. After several years in the grip of insanity, he died in 1848 in the house of the noble family Scotti. After his death Donizetti was buried in the cemetery of Valtesse
Valtesse
Valtesse, located at is a borough of the city of Bergamo in the north part of the city between the hill of Città Alta and Maresana Hill. The population is approximately 10,000.-Overview:...

 but in the late 19th century his body was transferred to Bergamo's Basilica of Santa Maria Maggiore near the grave of his teacher Simon Mayr.

Donizetti is best known for his operatic works, but he also wrote music in a number of other forms, including some church music, a number of string quartet
String quartet
A string quartet is a musical ensemble of four string players – usually two violin players, a violist and a cellist – or a piece written to be performed by such a group...

s, and some orchestral works.

He was the younger brother of Giuseppe Donizetti
Giuseppe Donizetti
Giuseppe Donizetti was, from 1828, Instructor General of the Imperial Ottoman Music at the court of Sultan Mahmud II .His younger brother Gaetano Donizetti was a famous Italian opera composer...

, who had become, in 1828, Instructor General of the Imperial Ottoman
Ottoman Empire
The Ottoman EmpireIt was usually referred to as the "Ottoman Empire", the "Turkish Empire", the "Ottoman Caliphate" or more commonly "Turkey" by its contemporaries...

 Music at the court of Sultan Mahmud II
Mahmud II
Mahmud II was the 30th Sultan of the Ottoman Empire from 1808 until his death in 1839. He was born in the Topkapi Palace, Istanbul, the son of Sultan Abdulhamid I...

 (1808–1839).

Works



Donizetti was a prolific composer. He composed about 75 operas, 16 symphonies, 19 string quartets, 193 songs, 45 duets, 3 oratorios, 28 cantatas, instrumental concertos, sonatas, and other chamber pieces.

1816–1819

  • Il Pigmalione (written 1816; premiere: 13 October 1960, Teatro Donizetti
    Teatro Donizetti
    The Teatro Donizetti is an opera house in Bergamo, Italy. Built in the 1780s using a design by architect Giovanni Francesco Lucchini, the theatre was originally referred to as either the Teatro Nuovo or Teatro di Fiera. The first opera to be mounted at the theatre, Giuseppe Sarti's Medonte, re di...

    , Bergamo
    Bergamo
    Bergamo is a town and comune in Lombardy, Italy, about 40 km northeast of Milan. The comune is home to over 120,000 inhabitants. It is served by the Orio al Serio Airport, which also serves the Province of Bergamo, and to a lesser extent the metropolitan area of Milan...

    )
  • Olimpiade (1817, incomplete, libretto by Metastasio
    Metastasio
    Pietro Antonio Domenico Trapassi, better known by his pseudonym of Metastasio, was an Italian poet and librettist, considered the most important writer of opera seria libretti.-Early life:...

    )
  • L'ira di Achille (1817)
  • Enrico di Borgogna
    Enrico di Borgogna
    Enrico di Borgogna is an opera eroica or "heroic" opera in two acts by Gaetano Donizetti. Bartolomeo Merelli , wrote the Italian libretto based on Der Graf von Burgund by August von Kotzebue.Enrico di Borgogna was the third opera composed by Donizetti, but the first to...

     (14 November 1818, Teatro San Luca, Venice
    Venice
    Venice is a city in northern Italy which is renowned for the beauty of its setting, its architecture and its artworks. It is the capital of the Veneto region...

    )
  • Una follia
    Una follia
    Una follia is an opera in one act by composer Gaetano Donizetti. The work premiered on 15 December 1818 at the Teatro San Luca in Venice. The opera uses the same Italian-language libretto by Bartolomeo Merelli after August von Kotzebue's Der Graf von Burgund that Donizetti used for his Enrico di...

     (17 December 1818, Teatro San Luca, Venice
    Venice
    Venice is a city in northern Italy which is renowned for the beauty of its setting, its architecture and its artworks. It is the capital of the Veneto region...

    ) (lost)
  • I piccioli virtuosi ambulanti (1819), opera buffa in one act
  • Pietro il Grande zar di tutte le Russie ossia Il Falegname di Livonia (26 December 1819, Teatro San Samuele
    Teatro San Samuele
    Teatro San Samuele was an opera house and theatre located at the Rio del Duca, between Campo San Samuele and Campo Santo Stefano, in Venice. One of several important theatres built in that city by the Grimani family, the theatre opened in 1656 and operated continuously until a fire destroyed the...

    , Venice),

1820–1824

  • Le nozze in villa (1820; 1821? Teatro Vecchio, Mantua
    Mantua
    Mantua is a city and comune in Lombardy, Italy and capital of the province of the same name. Mantua's historic power and influence under the Gonzaga family, made it one of the main artistic, cultural and notably musical hubs of Northern Italy and the country as a whole...

    )
  • Zoraida di Granata or Zoraïda di Granata (28 January 1822, Teatro Argentina
    Teatro Argentina
    The Teatro Argentina is an opera house and theatre located in the Largo di Torre Argentina, a square in Rome, Italy. It is one of the oldest theatres in Rome, and was inaugurated on January 31, 1732 with Berenice by Domenico Sarro....

    , Rome, rev. 7 January 1824 at the same theatre)
  • La Zingara (12 May 1822, Teatro Nuovo, Naples
    Naples
    Naples is a city in Southern Italy, situated on the country's west coast by the Gulf of Naples. Lying between two notable volcanic regions, Mount Vesuvius and the Phlegraean Fields, it is the capital of the region of Campania and of the province of Naples...

    )
  • La lettera anonima
    La lettera anonima
    La lettera anonima is a farce in one act composed by Gaetano Donizetti in 1822 to a libretto by Giulio Genoino, a former monk and the official censor of the Kingdom of the Two Sicilies...

     (29 June 1822, Teatro del Fondo
    Teatro del Fondo
    The Teatro del Fondo is a theatre in Naples, now known as the Teatro Mercadante. Together with the Teatro San Carlo, it was originally one of the two royal opera houses of the 18th and 19th-century city....

    , Naples
    Naples
    Naples is a city in Southern Italy, situated on the country's west coast by the Gulf of Naples. Lying between two notable volcanic regions, Mount Vesuvius and the Phlegraean Fields, it is the capital of the region of Campania and of the province of Naples...

    )
  • Chiara e Serafina, ossia I pirati (26 October 1822, Teatro alla Scala, Milan)
  • Alfredo il grande
    Alfredo il Grande
    Alfredo il grande is a melodramma serio or serious opera in two acts by Gaetano Donizetti. Andrea Leone Tottola wrote the Italian libretto, which may have been derived from Johann Simon Mayr's 1818 opera of the same name...

     (2 July 1823, Teatro San Carlo, Naples
    Naples
    Naples is a city in Southern Italy, situated on the country's west coast by the Gulf of Naples. Lying between two notable volcanic regions, Mount Vesuvius and the Phlegraean Fields, it is the capital of the region of Campania and of the province of Naples...

    )
  • Il fortunato inganno (3 September 1823, Teatro Nuovo, Naples
    Naples
    Naples is a city in Southern Italy, situated on the country's west coast by the Gulf of Naples. Lying between two notable volcanic regions, Mount Vesuvius and the Phlegraean Fields, it is the capital of the region of Campania and of the province of Naples...

    )
  • L'ajo nell'imbarazzo
    L'ajo nell'imbarazzo
    L'ajo nell'imbarazzo is a melodramma giocoso, or opera, in two acts by Gaetano Donizetti. The Italian libretto was written by Jacopo Ferretti, after the 1807 play by Giovanni Giraud...

     (4 February 1824, Teatro Valle, Rome)
  • Emilia di Liverpool
    Emilia di Liverpool
    Emilia di Liverpool is a dramma semiseria, dramatic opera, in two acts with music by Gaetano Donizetti. Giuseppe Ceccherini wrote the Italian libretto after the anonymous libretto for Vittorio Trento's Emilia di Laverpaut, itself based on Stefano Scatizzi's play of the same name...

     (L'eremitaggio di Liverpool) (28 July 1824, Teatro Nuovo, Naples)

1825–1829

  • Alahor in Granata
    Alahor in Granata
    Alahor in Granata is an opera in two acts by Gaetano Donizetti to an anonymous Italian libretto after Jean-Pierre Claris de Florian's text Gonzalve de Cordoue, ou Granade reconquise...

     (7 January 1826 Teatro Carolino, Palermo)
  • Don Gregorio
    Don Gregorio (opera)
    Don Gregorio is an opera by Gaetano Donizetti, adapted from his popular 1824 opera buffa L'ajo nell'imbarazzo, from a libretto by Jacopo Ferretti. While L'ajo nell'imbarazzo enjoyed success at Teatro Valle, it was not suited to the Teatro Nuovo in Naples, where Francesco Tortoli was interested in...

     [rev of L'ajo nell'imbarazzo] (11 June 1826, Teatro Nuovo, Naples)
  • Elvida
    Elvida
    Elvida is a melodramma or opera in one act by Gaetano Donizetti. Giovanni Schmidt wrote the Italian libretto. The opera was written as a pièce d'occasion for the birthday of Queen Maria of the Two Sicilies. The choice of subject matter was no doubt intended as an elegant acknowledgement of the...

     (6 July 1826, Teatro San Carlo, Naples)
  • Gabriella di Vergy
    Gabriella di Vergy
    Gabriella di Vergy is an opera seria in two acts by Gaetano Donizetti written in 1826 and revised in 1838, from a libretto by Andrea Leone Tottola, which was based on the tragedy Gabrielle de Vergy by Dormont De Belloy...

     (written: 1826; premiere: 29 November 1869, Teatro San Carlo, Naples) (Gabriella)
  • Olivo e Pasquale
    Olivo e Pasquale
    Olivo e Pasquale is a melodramma giocoso, a romantic comedy opera, in two acts by Gaetano Donizetti. Jacopo Ferretti wrote the Italian libretto after Simeone Antonio Sografi's play.- Roles :...

     (7 January 1827 Teatro Valle, Rome)
  • Olivo e Pasquale [rev] (1 September 1827, Teatro Nuovo, Naples)
  • Otto mesi in due ore
    Otto mesi in due ore
    Otto mesi in due ore ossia Gli esiliati in Siberia is an opera in three acts by Gaetano Donizetti to a libretto by Domenico Gilardoni....

     (13 May 1827, Teatro Nuovo, Naples) (Gli esiliati in Siberia)
  • Il borgomastro di Saardam
    Il borgomastro di Saardam
    Il borgomastro di Saardam is an opera buffa in two acts by Gaetano Donizetti. It premiered at the Teatro del Fondo in Naples on 19 August 1827. The Neapolitans loved it, for Donizetti was very popular in that city, but when it was staged at the Teatro La Scala in Milan, it completely failed...

     (19 August 1827, Teatro del Fondo, Naples)
  • Le convenienze ed inconvenienze teatrali
    Le convenienze ed inconvenienze teatrali
    Le convenienze ed inconvenienze teatrali , also known as Viva la mamma, is a dramma giocoso, or opera, in two acts by Gaetano Donizetti...

    , also known as Viva la mamma (21 November 1827, Teatro Nuovo, Naples)
  • L'esule di Roma, ossia Il proscritto (1 January 1828, Teatro San Carlo, Naples)
  • Emilia di Liverpool [rev] (8 March 1828, Teatro Nuovo, Naples)
  • Alina, regina di Golconda
    Alina, regina di Golconda
    Alina, regina di Golconda is an opera in two acts by Gaetano Donizetti. The Italian libretto was written by Felice Romani after Michel-Jean Sedaine's French libretto for Pierre-Alexandre Monsigny's ballet-heroique Aline, reine de Golconde , in its turn based on the novel by Stanislas de Boufflers...

     (12 May 1828, Teatro Carlo Felice, Genoa)
  • Gianni di Calais
    Gianni di Calais
    Gianni di Calais is a melodramma semiserio, a "semi-serious" opera in three acts by Gaetano Donizetti , from a libretto by Domenico Gilardoni, based on Jean de Paris by Louis-Charles Caignes....

     (2 August 1828, Teatro del Fondo, Naples)
  • Il paria (12 January 1829, Teatro San Carlo, Naples)
  • Il giovedi grasso
    Il giovedì grasso
    Il giovedì grasso is a farsa in one act by Gaetano Donizetti, from a libretto by Domenico Gilardoni. The libretto was adapted from the French comedies Monsieur de Pourceaugnac by Molière and Le nouveau Pourceaugnac by Charles-Gaspard Delestre-Poirson and Eugène Scribe...

     (Il nuovo Pourceaugnac) (26 February 1829?, Teatro del Fondo, Naples)
  • Il castello di Kenilworth
    Il castello di Kenilworth
    Il castello di Kenilworth is a melodramma serio or tragic opera in three acts by Gaetano Donizetti. Andrea Leone Tottola wrote the Italian libretto after Victor Hugo's play Amy Robsart and Eugene Scribe's play Leicester, in its turn after Scott's novel Kenilworth...

     (6 July 1829, Teatro San Carlo, Naples)
  • Alina, regina di Golconda
    Alina, regina di Golconda
    Alina, regina di Golconda is an opera in two acts by Gaetano Donizetti. The Italian libretto was written by Felice Romani after Michel-Jean Sedaine's French libretto for Pierre-Alexandre Monsigny's ballet-heroique Aline, reine de Golconde , in its turn based on the novel by Stanislas de Boufflers...

     [rev] (10 October 1829, Teatro Valle, Rome)

1830–1834

  • I pazzi per progetto
    I pazzi per progetto
    I Pazzi per progetto is a farce in one act by Gaetano Donizetti to a libretto by Domenico Gilardoni.The autographed score was preserved at the Conservatorio S. Pietro a Majella in Naples. The first performance took place at Teatro del Fondo, Naples on 7 February 1830...

     (6 February 1830, Teatro San Carlo, Naples)
  • Il diluvio universale
    Il diluvio universale
    Il diluvio universale is an azione tragico-sacra, or opera, by Gaetano Donizetti. The Italian libretto was written by Domenico Gilardoni after Lord Byron's Heaven and Earth and Padre Ringhieri's Il diluvio....

     (28 February 1830, Teatro San Carlo, Naples)
  • Imelda de' Lambertazzi
    Imelda de' Lambertazzi
    Imelda de' Lambertazzi is a melodramma tragico or tragic opera in two acts by Gaetano Donizetti from a libretto by Andrea Leone Tottola, based on the tragedy Imelda by Gabriele Sperduti. It received its first performance on 5 September 1830 at the Teatro San Carlo, Naples.-Performance history:The...

     (5 September 1830, Teatro San Carlo, Naples)
  • Anna Bolena
    Anna Bolena
    Anna Bolena is a tragedia lirica, or opera, in two acts by Gaetano Donizetti. Felice Romani wrote the Italian libretto after Ippolito Pindemonte's Enrico VIII ossia Anna Bolena and Alessandro Pepoli's Anna Bolena, both telling of the life of Anne Boleyn...

     (26 December 1830, Teatro Carcano, Milan)
  • Le convenienze ed inconvenienze teatrali
    Le convenienze ed inconvenienze teatrali
    Le convenienze ed inconvenienze teatrali , also known as Viva la mamma, is a dramma giocoso, or opera, in two acts by Gaetano Donizetti...

     [rev of Le convenienze teatrali] (20 April 1831, Teatro Canobbiana, Milan)
  • Gianni di Parigi
    Gianni di Parigi
    Gianni di Parigi is a melodramma or opera in two acts by Gaetano Donizetti from a libretto by Felice Romani, which had been previously used by Francesco Morlacchi for an opera of the same name...

     (written: 1831; premiere: 10 September 1839, Teatro alla Scala Milan)
  • Francesca di Foix
    Francesca di Foix
    Francesca di Foix is a melodramma giocoso or opera in one act by Gaetano Donizetti from a libretto by Domenico Gilardoni, based on Françoise de Foix by Jean-Nicolas Bouilly and Emmanuel Mercier-Dupaty....

     (30 May 1831, Teatro San Carlo, Naples)
  • La romanzesca e l'uomo nero
    La romanzesca e l'uomo nero
    La romanzesca e l'uomo nero is a one-act farsa by Gaetano Donizetti. Domenico Gilardoni wrote the Italian libretto, probably basing it on L'homme noir by Eugene Scribe and Jean-Henri Dupin and Le coiffeur et le perruquier by Scribe, Edouard Mazères and Charles Nombret Saint-Laurent...

     (or La romanziera e l'uomo nero) (18 June 1831, Teatro del Fondo, Naples) (arias and ensembles survive but spoken dialogue is lost)
  • Fausta
    Fausta (opera)
    Fausta is a melodramma, or opera, in two acts by Gaetano Donizetti. The Italian libretto was by Domenico Gilardoni, who died while writing it: the remainder was written by Donizetti. The opera debuted on 12 January 1832 at the Teatro San Carlo, Naples, and was written with prima donna Giuseppina...

     (12 January 1832, Teatro San Carlo, Naples)
  • Ugo, conte di Parigi
    Ugo, conte di Parigi
    Ugo, conte di Parigi is a tragedia lirica, or tragic opera, in two acts by Gaetano Donizetti. Felice Romani wrote the Italian libretto after Hippolyte-Louis-Florent Bis's Blanche d'Aquitaine...

     (13 March 1832, Teatro alla Scala Milan)
  • L'elisir d'amore
    L'elisir d'amore
    L'elisir d'amore is an opera by the Italian composer Gaetano Donizetti. It is a melodramma giocoso in two acts...

     (12 May 1832, Teatro Canobbiana, Milan)
  • Sancia di Castiglia
    Sancia di Castiglia
    Sancia di Castiglia is an Italian opera seria in two acts by Gaetano Donizetti to a libretto by Pietro Salatino. It was first performed at the Teatro San Carlo in Naples, on 4 November 1832 conducted by Nicola Festa.-Roles:...

     (4 November 1832, Teatro San Carlo, Naples)
  • Il furioso all'isola di San Domingo
    Il furioso all'isola di San Domingo
    Il furioso all'isola di San Domingo is a melodramma, or opera, in three acts by composer Gaetano Donizetti. Jacopo Ferretti wrote the Italian libretto after Miguel de Cervantes's novel Don Quixote. The opera premiered at the Teatro Valle in Rome, Italy on 2 January 1833...

     (2 January 1833, Teatro Valle, Rome)
  • Otto mesi in due ore [rev] (1833, Livorno)
  • Parisina
    Parisina (opera)
    Parisina is an opera , in three acts by Gaetano Donizetti. Felice Romani wrote the Italian libretto after Byron's 1816 poem Parisina...

     (17 March 1833, Teatro della Pergola
    Teatro della Pergola
    The Teatro della Pergola is a historic opera house in Florence, Italy. It is located in the centre of the city on the Via della Pergola, from which the theatre takes its name...

    , Florence)
  • Torquato Tasso
    Torquato Tasso (opera)
    Torquato Tasso is a melodramma semiseria, or 'semi-serious' opera, in three acts by Gaetano Donizetti and based on the life of the great poet Torquato Tasso. The Italian libretto was written by Jacopo Ferretti, who used a number of sources for his text, including works by Giovanni Rosini, Goethe,...

     (9 September 1833, Teatro Valle, Rome)
  • Lucrezia Borgia
    Lucrezia Borgia (opera)
    Lucrezia Borgia is a melodramma, or opera, in a prologue and two acts by Gaetano Donizetti. Felice Romani wrote the Italian libretto after the play by Victor Hugo, in its turn after the legend of Lucrezia Borgia. Lucrezia Borgia was first performed on 26 December 1833 at La Scala, Milan with...

     (26 December 1833, Teatro alla Scala Milan)
  • Il diluvio universale [rev] (17 January 1834, Teatro Carlo Felice, Genoa)
  • Rosmonda d'Inghilterra
    Rosmonda d'Inghilterra
    Rosmonda d'Inghilterra is a melodramma or opera in two acts by Gaetano Donizetti. The Italian libretto was written by Felice Romani originally for Coccia's Rosmunda...

     (27 February 1834, Teatro della Pergola, Florence)
  • Maria Stuarda [rev] (18 October 1834, Teatro San Carlo, Naples)
  • Gemma di Vergy
    Gemma di Vergy
    Gemma de Vergy is a tragedia lirica or tragic opera in two acts by Gaetano Donizetti from a libretto by Emanuele Bidéra. It is based on the tragedy Charles VII chez ses grands vassaux by Alexandre Dumas père, which was later to become the subject of the opera The Saracen by the Russian composer...

     (26 October 1834, Teatro alla Scala Milan)

1835–1839

  • Maria Stuarda
    Maria Stuarda
    Maria Stuarda is a tragic opera, , in two acts, by Gaetano Donizetti, to a libretto by Giuseppe Bardari, based on Friedrich Schiller's 1800 play Maria Stuart....

     (30 December 1835, Teatro alla Scala Milan)
  • Marin Faliero (12 March 1835, Théâtre-Italien, Paris)
  • Lucia di Lammermoor
    Lucia di Lammermoor
    Lucia di Lammermoor is a dramma tragico in three acts by Gaetano Donizetti. Salvadore Cammarano wrote the Italian language libretto loosely based upon Sir Walter Scott's historical novel The Bride of Lammermoor....

     (26 September 1835, Teatro San Carlo, Naples)
  • Belisario
    Belisario
    Belisario is a tragedia lirica, or opera, in three acts by Gaetano Donizetti. Salvadore Cammarano wrote the Italian libretto after Luigi Marchionni's adaptation of Eduard von Schenk's play. The plot is loosely based on the life of the famous general Belisarius of the 6th century Byzantine Empire...

     (4 February 1836, Teatro La Fenice, Venice)
  • Il campanello di notte (1 June 1836, Teatro Nuovo, Naples)
  • Betly, o La capanna svizzera
    Betly
    Betly is a dramma giocoso in two acts by the Italian composer Gaetano Donizetti. The composer wrote the Italian libretto after Eugène Scribe and Anne-Honoré-Joseph Duveyrier de Mélésville's libretto for Adolphe Adam's opéra comique Le châlet, in its turn based on Goethe's Singspiel Jery und...

     (21 August 1836, Teatro Nuovo, Naples)
  • L'assedio di Calais
    L'assedio di Calais
    L'assedio di Calais is a melodramma lirico, or opera, in three acts by Gaetano Donizetti. Salvatore Cammarano wrote the Italian libretto after Luigi Marchionni's play and, secondarily, Luigi Henry's ballet , both based on Pierre Du Belloy's play Le siège de Calais...

     (19 November 1836, Teatro San Carlo, Naples)
  • Pia de' Tolomei
    Pia de' Tolomei
    Pia de' Tolomei is a tragedia lirica, or tragic opera, in two acts by Gaetano Donizetti. Salvadore Cammarano wrote the Italian libretto after Bartolomeo Sestini's novella, in its turn after Dante's narrative poem The Divine Comedy part 2: Purgatorio...

     (18 February 1837, Teatro Apollo, Venice)
  • Pia de' Tolomei [rev] (31 July 1837, Sinigaglia)
  • Betly [rev] ((?) 29 September 1837, Teatro del Fondo, Naples)
  • Roberto Devereux
    Roberto Devereux
    Roberto Devereux is a tragedia lirica, or tragic opera, by Gaetano Donizetti...

     (28 October 1837, Teatro San Carlo, Naples)
  • Maria de Rudenz
    Maria de Rudenz
    Maria de Rudenz is a dramma tragico, or tragic opera, in three parts by Gaetano Donizetti. The Italian libretto was written by Salvadore Cammarano, based on "a piece of Gothic horror", La nonne sanglante by Anicet-Bourgeois, Cuvelier and Maillan, and The monk by Matthew Gregory Lewis...

     (30 January 1838, Teatro La Fenice, Venice)
  • Gabriella di Vergy [rev] (written: 1838; August 1978 recording, London)
  • Poliuto
    Poliuto
    Poliuto is a tragedia lirica, or tragic opera, by Gaetano Donizetti. Salvadore Cammarano wrote the Italian libretto after Pierre Corneille's play Polyeucte . It was composed in 1838 and first performed on 30 November 1848 at the Teatro San Carlo, Naples...

     (written: 1838; premiere: 30 November 1848, Teatro San Carlo, Naples)
  • Pia de' Tolomei
    Pia de' Tolomei
    Pia de' Tolomei is a tragedia lirica, or tragic opera, in two acts by Gaetano Donizetti. Salvadore Cammarano wrote the Italian libretto after Bartolomeo Sestini's novella, in its turn after Dante's narrative poem The Divine Comedy part 2: Purgatorio...

     [rev 2] (30 September 1838, Teatro San Carlo, Naples)
  • Lucie de Lammermoor [rev of Lucia di Lammermoor] (6 August 1839, Théâtre de la Renaissance, Paris)
  • Le duc d'Albe
    Le duc d'Albe
    Le duc d'Albe or Il duca d'Alba is an opera in three acts originally composed by Gaetano Donizetti in 1839 to a French language libretto by Eugène Scribe and Charles Duveyrier...

     (written: 1839; premiere: 22 March 1882, Teatro Apollo, Rome) (Il duca d'Alba)

1840–1845

  • Lucrezia Borgia
    Lucrezia Borgia (opera)
    Lucrezia Borgia is a melodramma, or opera, in a prologue and two acts by Gaetano Donizetti. Felice Romani wrote the Italian libretto after the play by Victor Hugo, in its turn after the legend of Lucrezia Borgia. Lucrezia Borgia was first performed on 26 December 1833 at La Scala, Milan with...

     [rev] (11 January 1840, Teatro alla Scala Milan)
  • Poliuto
    Poliuto
    Poliuto is a tragedia lirica, or tragic opera, by Gaetano Donizetti. Salvadore Cammarano wrote the Italian libretto after Pierre Corneille's play Polyeucte . It was composed in 1838 and first performed on 30 November 1848 at the Teatro San Carlo, Naples...

     [rev] (Les martyrs) (10 April 1840, Paris Opera
    Paris Opera
    The Paris Opera is the primary opera company of Paris, France. It was founded in 1669 by Louis XIV as the Académie d'Opéra and shortly thereafter was placed under the leadership of Jean-Baptiste Lully and renamed the Académie Royale de Musique...

     (Salle Le Peletier)
  • La fille du régiment
    La fille du régiment
    La fille du régiment is an opéra comique in two acts by Gaetano Donizetti. It was written while the composer was living in Paris, with a French libretto by Jules-Henri Vernoy de Saint-Georges and Jean-François Bayard.La figlia del reggimento, a slightly different Italian-language version , was...

     (11 February 1840, Opéra-Comique, Paris)
  • L'ange de Nisida
    L'ange de Nisida
    L'ange de Nisida is an opera semiseria in four acts by Italian composer Gaetano Donizetti, from a libretto by Alphonse Royer and Gustave Vaëz....

     (1839; ?)
  • Lucrezia Borgia [rev 2] (31 October 1840, Théâtre-Italien, Paris)
  • La favorite
    La favorite
    La favorite is an opera in four acts by Gaetano Donizetti to a French-language libretto by Alphonse Royer and Gustave Vaëz, based on the play Le comte de Comminges by Baculard d'Arnaud...

     [rev of L'ange de Nisida] (2 December 1840, Paris Opera (Salle Le Peletier)
  • Adelia
    Adelia (opera)
    Adelia, o La figlia dell'arciere is an opera in three acts by Gaetano Donizetti. The Italian libretto was written by Felice Romani and Girolamo Marini...

     (11 February 1841, Teatro Apollo, Rome)
  • Rita
    Rita (opera)
    Rita, ou Le mari battu is an opéra comique in one act, composed by Gaetano Donizetti to a French libretto by Gustave Vaëz. The opera, a domestic comedy consisting of eight musical numbers connected by spoken dialogue, was completed in 1841 under its original title Deux hommes et une femme...

     (Deux hommes et une femme) (written: 1841; premiere: 7 May 1860, Opéra-Comique, Paris)
  • Maria Padilla
    Maria Padilla
    Maria Padilla is a melodramma, or opera, in three acts by Gaetano Donizetti. Gaetano Rossi and the composer wrote the Italian libretto after François Ancelot's play. It premiered on December 26, 1841 at La Scala, Milan...

     (26 December 1841, Teatro alla Scala Milan)
  • Linda di Chamounix
    Linda di Chamounix
    Linda di Chamounix is an operatic melodramma semiserio in three acts by Gaetano Donizetti. The Italian libretto was written by Gaetano Rossi. It premiered in Vienna, at the Kärntnertortheater, on May 19, 1842.-Performance history:...

     (19 May 1842, Kärntnertortheater, Vienna)
  • Linda di Chamounix [rev] (17 November 1842, Théâtre-Italien, Paris)
  • Caterina Cornaro
    Caterina Cornaro (opera)
    Caterina Cornaro ossia La Regina di Cipro is a tragedia lirica, or opera, in a prologue and two acts by Gaetano Donizetti. Giacomo Sacchèro wrote the Italian libretto after Jules-Henri Vernoy de Saint-Georges' libretto for Halévy's La reine de Chypre...

     (18 January 1844, Teatro San Carlo, Naples)
  • Don Pasquale
    Don Pasquale
    Don Pasquale is an opera buffa, or comic opera, in three acts by Gaetano Donizetti. The librettist Giovanni Ruffini wrote the Italian language libretto after Angelo Anelli's libretto for Stefano Pavesi's Ser Marcantonio ....

     (3 January 1843, Théâtre-Italien, Paris)
  • Maria di Rohan
    Maria di Rohan
    Maria di Rohan is a melodramma tragico, or tragic opera, in three acts by Gaetano Donizetti. The Italian libretto was written by Salvadore Cammarano, after Lockroy and Edmond Badon's Un duel sous le cardinal de Richelieu, which had played in Paris in 1832.- Roles :- Synopsis :The comte de...

     (5 June 1843, Kärntnertortheater, Vienna)
  • Dom Sébastien
    Dom Sébastien
    Dom Sébastien, Roi de Portugal is a French grand opera in five acts by Gaetano Donizetti. The libretto was written by Eugène Scribe, based on Paul Foucher's play Don Sébastien de Portugal , a historic-fiction about King Sebastian of Portugal and his ill-fated 1578 expedition to Morocco...

     (13 November 1843, Paris Opera (Salle Le Peletier)
  • Dom Sébastien [rev] (6 February 1845, Kärntnertortheater, Vienna)

Choral works



  • Ave Maria
  • Grande Offertorio
  • Il sospiro

  • Messa da Requiem
  • Messa di Gloria e Credo
  • Miserere (Psalm 50)


Orchestral works



  • Allegro for Strings in C major
  • Larghetto, tema e variazioni in E flat major
  • Sinfonia Concertante in D major (1818)
  • Sinfonia for Winds in G minor (1817)

  • Sinfonia in A major
  • Sinfonia in C major
  • Sinfonia in D major
  • Sinfonia in D minor


Concertos



  • Concertino for Clarinet in B flat major
  • Concertino for English Horn in G major (1816)
  • Concertino in C minor for flute and chamber orchestra (1819)
  • Concertino for Flute and Orchestra in C major
  • Concertino for Flute and Orchestra in D major

  • Concertino for Oboe in F major
  • Concertino for Violin and Cello in D minor
  • Concerto for 2 Clarinets "Maria Padilla"
  • Concerto for Violin and Cello in D minor


Chamber works



  • Andante sostenuto for Oboe and Harp in F minor
  • Introduction for Strings in D major
  • Larghetto and Allegro for Violin and Harp in G minor
  • Largo/Moderato for Cello and Piano in G minor
  • Nocturnes (4) for Winds and Strings
  • Quartet for Strings in D major
  • Quartet for Strings no 3 in C minor: 2nd movement, Adagio ma non troppo
  • Quartet for Strings no 4 in D major
  • Quartet for Strings no 5 in E minor
  • Quartet for Strings no 5 in E minor: Larghetto
  • Quartet for Strings no 6 in G minor
  • Quartet for Strings no 7 in F minor
  • Quartet for Strings no 8 in B flat major
  • Quartet for Strings no 9 in D minor
  • Quartet for Strings no 10 in G minor
  • Quartet for Strings no 11 in C major

  • Quartet for Strings no 12 in C major
  • Quartet for Strings no 13 in A major
  • Quartet for Strings no 14 in D major
  • Quartet for Strings no 15 in F major
  • Quartet for Strings no 16 in B minor
  • Quartet for Strings no 17 in D major
  • Quartet for Strings no 18 in E minor
  • Quartet for Strings no 18 in E minor: Allegro
  • Quintet for Guitar and Strings no 2 in C major
  • Solo de concert
  • Sonata for Flute and Harp
  • Sonata for Flute and Piano in C minor
  • Sonata for Oboe and Piano in F major
  • Study for Clarinet no 1 in B flat major
  • Trio for Flute, Bassoon and Piano in F major


Piano works



  • Adagio and Allegro for Piano in G major
  • Allegro for Piano in C major
  • Allegro for Piano in F minor
  • Fugue for Piano in G minor
  • Grand Waltz for Piano in A major
  • Larghetto for Piano in A minor "Una furtiva lagrima
    Una furtiva lagrima
    Una furtiva lagrima is the romanza taken from Act II, Scene VIII of the Italian opera, L'elisir d'amore by Gaetano Donizetti. It is sung by Nemorino when he finds that the love potion he bought to win his dream lady’s heart, Adina, works.Nemorino is in love with Adina, but she isn't interested in...

    "
  • Larghetto for Piano in C major
  • Pastorale for Piano in E major
  • Presto for Piano in F minor
  • Sinfonia for Piano in A major
  • Sinfonia for Piano no 1 in C major

  • Sinfonia for Piano no 1 in D major
  • Sinfonia for Piano no 2 in C major
  • Sinfonia for Piano no 2 in D major
  • Sonata for Piano in C major
  • Sonata for Piano in F major
  • Sonata for Piano in G major
  • Variations for Piano in E major
  • Variations for Piano in G major
  • Waltz for Piano in A major
  • Waltz for Piano in C major
  • Waltz for Piano in C major "The Invitation"


Media



Quotations

  • "Ah, by Bacchus, with this aria I shall receive universal applause. People will say to me, “Bravo maestro!”
I, in a very modest manner, shall walk about with bowed head; I’ll have rave reviews…I can become immortal…
My mind is vast, my genius swift...
And at composing, a thunderbolt am I."
(From a poem composed by 14-year-old Gaetano Donizetti)

  • "Donizetti, when asked which of his own operas he thought the best, spontaneously replied, 'How can I say which? A father always has a preference for a crippled child, and I have so many.'" (Louis Engel: "From Mozart to Mario", 1886)

External links




Sheet music

Recordings
  • Donizetti cylinder recordings, from the Cylinder Preservation and Digitization Project
    Cylinder Preservation and Digitization Project
    The Cylinder Preservation and Digitization Project is a free digital collection maintained by the University of California, Santa Barbara Libraries with streaming and downloadable versions of over 10,000 phonograph cylinders manufactured between 1893 and the mid 1920s.- History :The project began...

     at the University of California, Santa Barbara
    University of California, Santa Barbara
    The University of California, Santa Barbara, commonly known as UCSB or UC Santa Barbara, is a public research university and one of the 10 general campuses of the University of California system. The main campus is located on a site in Goleta, California, from Santa Barbara and northwest of Los...

    Library.