Music notes

Spinto soprano

A spinto soprano (also lirico-spinto, spinto lyric soprano or “pushed lyric”) is a type of operatic soprano voice that has the limpidity and easy high notes of a lyric soprano, yet can be “pushed” on to achieve dramatic climaxes without strain. This type of voice may possess a somewhat darker timbre, too, than the average lyric soprano. It generally uses squillo to “slice” through the sound of a full orchestra, rather than singing over the orchestra like a true dramatic soprano.

Spinto sopranos are also expected to handle dynamic changes in the music that they are performing with skill and poise. They command a vocal range extending from approximately middle C (C4) to “high D” (D6).

The spinto repertoire includes many roles written by Verdi, by the various verismo composers, and by Puccini. Some of these roles are extremely popular with opera audiences. Certain Wagnerian heroines such as Elsa, Elisabeth and Sieglinde are also sung by spinto sopranos. The fact that spinto sopranos are uncommon means that parts that are ideal for their voices are often performed by singers from other classifications, and more than a few lyric sopranos have damaged their voices singing heavier spinto roles.

The spinto tenor is the spinto soprano’s male equivalent among operatic voice types.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spinto_soprano

Spinto soprano was last modified: October 1st, 2020 by Jovan Stosic

The Beggar’s Opera

The Beggar’s Opera is a ballad opera in three acts written in 1728 by John Gay with music arranged by Johann Christoph Pepusch. It is one of the watershed plays in Augustan drama and is the only example of the once thriving genre of satirical ballad opera to remain popular today. Ballad operas were satiric musical plays that used some of the conventions of opera, but without recitative. The lyrics of the airs in the piece are set to popular broadsheet ballads, opera arias, church hymns and folk tunes of the time.

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Beggar%27s_Opera

The Beggar’s Opera was last modified: February 15th, 2020 by Jovan Stosic

Ballad opera

The ballad opera is a genre of English stage entertainment that originated in the early 18th century, and continued to develop over the following century and later. Like the earlier comédie en vaudeville and the later Singspiel, its distinguishing characteristic is the use of tunes in a popular style (either pre-existing or newly composed) with spoken dialogue. These English plays were ‘operas‘ mainly insofar as they satirized the conventions of the imported opera seria. Music critic Peter Gammond describes the ballad opera as “an important step in the emancipation of both the musical stage and the popular song.”

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ballad_opera

Ballad opera was last modified: February 15th, 2020 by Jovan Stosic

The Threepenny Opera

The Threepenny Opera (Die Dreigroschenoper) is a “play with music” by Bertolt Brecht, adapted from a translation by Elisabeth Hauptmann of John Gay‘s 18th-century English ballad opera, The Beggar’s Opera, and four ballads by François Villon, with music by Kurt Weill. Although there is debate as to how much, if any, Hauptmann might have contributed to the text, Brecht is usually listed as sole author.

The work offers a socialist critique of the capitalist world. It opened on 31 August 1928 at Berlin’s Theater am Schiffbauerdamm.

Songs from The Threepenny Opera have been widely covered and become standards, most notably “Die Moritat von Mackie Messer” (“The Ballad of Mack the Knife“) and “Seeräuberjenny” (“Pirate Jenny“).

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Threepenny_Opera

The Threepenny Opera was last modified: February 15th, 2020 by Jovan Stosic

The New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians

The New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians is an encyclopedic dictionary of music and musicians. Along with the German-language Die Musik in Geschichte und Gegenwart, it is one of the largest reference works on western music. Originally published under the title A Dictionary of Music and Musicians, and later as Grove’s Dictionary of Music and Musicians, it has gone through several editions since the 19th century and is widely used. In recent years it has been made available as an electronic resource called Grove Music Online, which is now an important part of Oxford Music Online.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_New_Grove_Dictionary_of_Music_and_Musicians

The New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians was last modified: January 14th, 2020 by Jovan Stosic

Symphony No. 2 (Mahler)

Symphony No. 2 by Gustav Mahler, known as the Resurrection Symphony, was written between 1888 and 1894, and first performed in 1895. This symphony was one of Mahler’s most popular and successful works during his lifetime. It was his first major work that established his lifelong view of the beauty of afterlife and resurrection. In this large work, the composer further developed the creativity of “sound of the distance” and creating a “world of its own”, aspects already seen in his First Symphony. The work has a duration of eighty to ninety minutes and is conventionally labelled as being in the key of C minor; the New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians labels the work’s tonality as C minor–E major. It was voted the fifth-greatest symphony of all time in a survey of conductors carried out by the BBC Music Magazine.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Symphony_No._2_(Mahler)

Symphony No. 2 (Mahler) was last modified: January 14th, 2020 by Jovan Stosic

Recorder (musical instrument)

The recorder is a woodwind musical instrument in the group known as internal duct flutes—flutes with a whistle mouthpiece, also known as fipple flutes. A recorder can be distinguished from other duct flutes by the presence of a thumb-hole for the upper hand and seven finger-holes: three for the upper hand and four for the lower. It is the most prominent duct flute in the western classical tradition.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Recorder_(musical_instrument)

Recorder (musical instrument) was last modified: December 8th, 2019 by Jovan Stosic