Eduardo e Cristina

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Eduardo e Cristina (Italian pronunciation: [eduˈardo e kriˈstiːna]) is an operatic 'dramma' in two acts by Gioachino Rossini to an Italian libretto originally written by Giovanni Schmidt for Odoardo e Cristina (1810), an opera by Stefano Pavesi, and adapted for Rossini by Andrea Leone Tottola and Gherardo Bevilacqua-Aldobrandini.

This pastiche work was composed in a great hurry for a first performance arranged less than a month after the premiere of Ermione. Rossini borrowed "19 of the 26 musical numbers"[1] from his other works, including Adelaide di Borgogna, Ricciardo e Zoraide, as well as Ermione itself.

The opera was first performed at the Teatro San Benedetto, Venice, on 24 April 1819 and given 24 performances that season before being revived the following year at the more prestigious La Fenice.[2] Ironically, while Ermione was not particularly well received, "Eduardo e Christina was a huge success".[2] Apparently, the first performance was so well received that it took six hours, given the large number of repetitions.[3]

Performance history[edit]

Osborne notes that there were productions elsewhere in Europe up to 1840, but after that they seem to have been very rare.[2] It was given on 25 November 1834 in New York,[3] but at the time of the publication of Osbourne's The Bel Canto Operas (1994), it had not been performed in Britain. Unlike most Neapolitan operas by Rossini, this one was "heavily altered from revival to revival"[3]

Roles[edit]

Role Voice type Premiere Cast, 24 April 1819
(Conductor: )
Carlo, King of Sweden tenor Eliodoro Bianchi
Cristina, his daughter, secret wife of Eduardo soprano Rosa Morandi
Eduardo, general of the Swedish army contralto Carolina Cortesi
Giacomo, royal prince of Scotland bass Luciano Bianchi
Atlei, captain of the guard, friend of Eduardo bass Vincenzo Fracalini
Gustavo, small child of Eduardo and Cristina silent

Synopsis[edit]

Place: Sweden
Time: "The distant past"[1]

Eduardo, commander of the Swedish army, brings news of peace and is greeted triumphantly by King Carlo in Stockholm. That same day, the king announces that his daughter, Cristina, is to be married to Prince Giacomo of Scotland. Cristina, however, is already secretly Eduardo’s wife, and together they have a young son, Gustavo. Christina makes plans to escape, but during the wedding preparations little Gustavo is discovered. Cristina proclaims herself his mother, though she will not reveal the father’s name. When Eduardo appears, he reveals himself to be the boy’s father, and the illicit couple are led off to prison. Cristina continues to refuse a proposal of marriage to Giacomo, even though he has agreed to recognize Gustavo as his own son. Eventually Eduardo is freed by his friend and comrade in arms, Captain Atlei, and together they defeat a surprise attack by the Russians. After the battle, Eduardo hands his sword to King Carlo who, touched, forgives the couple and grants them his blessing.

Recordings[edit]

Year Cast
(Carlo, Cristina, Eduardo, Giacomo, Atlei)
Conductor,
Opera House and Orchestra
Label[4]
1997 Omar Jara,
Carmen Acosta,
Eliseda Dumitru,
Konstantin Gorny,
Jorge Orlando Gómez
Francesco Corti,
I Virtuosi di Praga
(Recording of a performance at the Rossini in Wildbad Festival, July)
Audio CD: Bongiovanni
Cat: GB 2205/2206-2

References[edit]

Notes

  1. ^ a b Osborne, Charles 1994, p. 92
  2. ^ a b c Osborne, Charles 1994, p. 93
  3. ^ a b c Gossett and Brauner 2001, p. 785
  4. ^ The single recording of Eduardo e Cristina as listed on operadis-opera-discography.org.uk

Cited sources

Other sources

External links[edit]