Giuditta is an operatic musikalische Komödie (German - musical comedy) in five scenes, with music by Franz Lehár and a German libretto, by Paul Knepler and Fritz Löhner. Scored for a large orchestra, it was Lehár's last and most ambitious work, written on a larger scale than his previous operettas. Of all his works it is the one which most approaches true opera, the resemblances between the story and that of Bizet's Carmen and its unhappy ending heightening the resonances. Perhaps the best known song in the work is the soprano aria "Meine Lippen, sie küssen so heiß", sung by Giuditta in the fourth scene.
|Role||Voice type||Premiere Cast,
January 20, 1934
(Conductor: Clemens Krauss )
|Anita, a fishergirl||soprano||Margit Bokor|
|Manuele Biffi, Giuditta's husband||baritone||Hermann Wiedemann|
|Pierrino, a fruit seller||tenor||Georg Maikl|
|Professor Martini||bass||Viktor Madin|
The alluring Giuditta abandons her husband Manuele, and runs off with Octavio, an army officer, to North Africa. Military obligations intervene, and Octavio leaves Giuditta behind. She becomes a night club dancer, only to be discovered by Octavio, after he eventually deserts his unit. Giuditta is a success in her new profession, but Octavio's self-esteem is destroyed, and he becomes a club pianist.
- Decca GOS 583-4: Hilde Güden; Waldemar Kmentt; Murray Dickie; Emmy Loose; Walter Berry; Oscar Czerwenka; Vienna State Opera Chorus and Orch; Rudolf Moralt, conductor
Original Cast recordings of six numbers were made in Vienna by Odeon on 11 January 1934, with the composer conducting the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra. These include four solos by Tauber, one by Novotna, and their duet 'Schön wie die blaue Sommernacht'.
- Lamb, Andrew, "Record Reviews: Giuditta (July 1970). The Musical Times, 111 (1529): pp. 717-718.
- Amadeus Almanac, accessed 30 October 2008 (Italian)
- Lamb, Andrew, "Giuditta", The New Grove Dictionary of Opera, ed. Stanley Sadie (London, 1992) ISBN 0-333-73432-7