Duetto buffo di due gatti

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The Duetto buffo di due gatti ("humorous duet for two cats") is a popular performance piece for two sopranos which is often performed as a concert encore. The "lyrics" consist entirely of the repeated word "miau" ("meow"). Sometimes it is also performed by a soprano and a tenor, or a soprano and a bass.

While the piece is typically attributed to Gioachino Rossini, it was not actually written by him, but is instead a compilation written in 1825 that draws principally on his 1816 opera, Otello. Hubert Hunt putatively claims that the compiler was Robert Lucas de Pearsall, who for this purpose adopted the pseudonym "G. Berthold".[1]


In order of appearance, the piece consists of:

  • the "Katte-Cavatine" by the Danish composer C.E.F. Weyse[2]
  • part of the duet for Otello and Iago in Act 2 of Otello
  • part of the cabaletta to the aria "Ah, come mai non senti", sung by Rodrigo in the same act


Some albums including this piece are:

The Best of Rossini, EMI Classics, MESPLE/BERBIE/REISS, released 1992.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Hubert Hunt, Robert Lucas Pearsall: the Compleat Gentleman and His Music, 1795-1856. Chesham Bois (1977); Chris Woodstra. All Music Guide to Classical Music, 2005, p. 1126.
  2. ^ Richard Osborne: Rossini. London: Dent (1986), p. 179.