Saverio Mercadante - Il Bravo, ossia La veneziana (1839) - Duet/Scen
  • Classical music Mercadante composed "Il bravo" between 1838 and 1839, not without difficulty, as he had problems with finding a reliable librettist, going through Bindocci, soon replaced with Gaetano Rossi and later on with Marcelliano who, on the composer's demand, was supervised by Felice Romani. The work was written for Domenico Donzelli (nearing the end of an illustrious career) and premiered with an excellent cast (headed by Schoberlechner, the first Elaisa). The success of the opening night at la Scala on the 9th of March, 1839, was complete. No. 4. Duet for Pisani and Carlo. The present piece is one of the most unstraightforward of the whole opera, developing in a style of an intense dialogue between the two characters, interspersed with passionate ariosos and only two actual concentrated passages. The scene opens with a narrative verse for Pisani who recounts to a skeptical Carlo the story of his love for Violetta. Carlo, in a perfect dramatic touch, does not answer the young man in the same melody. Instead, a hurried discussion breaks between the two men, as Carlo finally realizes that Pisani is searching for Il Bravo, in hope of attaining his help in saving Violetta, a desire that Carlo tries to denounce but an affecting appeal by Pisani, asking the older man if had ever lost someone ("a lover, a mother, a father"), leads to a sudden break in the musical flow, as Carlo is reminded of the reason for his tormented soul; however, he tries to hide his sorrow and turns to Pisani ...

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