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The Anvil Chorus is the English name for the Coro di zingari (Italian for "Gypsy chorus"), a chorus from act 2, scene 1 of Giuseppe Verdi's 1853 opera Il trovatore. It depicts Spanish Gypsies striking their anvils at dawn – hence its English name – and singing the praises of hard work, good wine, and Gypsy women. The piece is also commonly known as Vedi! Le fosche notturne or simply Vedi! Le fosche.
Zingari e zingare:
Gypsy men and women:
In popular culture
- Only a quarter-century after the premiere of Il trovatore, W. S. Gilbert and Arthur Sullivan musically spoofed the Anvil Chorus in "With Cat-like Tread", in their 1879 operetta, The Pirates of Penzance.
- Part of this spoof was used at least as early as 1898 to provide the tune of "Hail, Hail, the Gang's All Here".
- In American sporting events of the early twentieth century, the Anvil Chorus was commonly sung by the spectators or played by a band when a player, especially an opponent, committed an error, or to "rub it in" to the losing side.
- In the 1929 Marx Brothers film The Cocoanuts, Harpo and Chico play the Anvil Chorus on a hotel's cash register. In their next film, Animal Crackers, in 1930, Chico plays a segment on the piano while Harpo clangs two horseshoes together. Later, in 1935's A Night at the Opera, the chorus is sung as part of a performance of Il trovatore as the police and the opera's general manager chase after Harpo and Chico backstage and onstage.
- Glenn Miller and his orchestra recorded a big band jazz version of this chorus.
- The chorus is often parodied in the Tiny Toons cartoons.
- In the film Bad Santa, the chorus is played as Willie T. Soke (Billy Bob Thornton) uses a sledgehammer to crack open a safe.
- Italian and English text
- "Riotous Commoners: Scenes of Disorder in the Lower House", Philadelphia Inquirer, April 1, 1898, p. 2.