Eine florentinische Tragödie

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Eine florentinische Tragödie
Opera by Alexander von Zemlinsky
The composer in 1908
Librettist Zemlinsky
Language German
Based on A Florentine Tragedy
by Oscar Wilde
Premiere 30 January 1917 (1917-01-30)
Hofoper Stuttgart

Eine florentinische Tragödie, Op. 16, is an opera in one act by Alexander von Zemlinsky to a libretto adapted by the composer from a German translation by Max Meyerfeld (de) of Oscar Wilde's unfinished play A Florentine Tragedy.

Performance history[edit]

The opera was premiered at the Staatsoper Stuttgart on 30 January 1917 under the direction of Max von Schillings. The last production during Zemlinsky's lifetime was in Brno in 1928. It lasts under one hour and is generally paired with another work when performed.

The score is published by Universal Edition Vienna.[1][2]


Role[1] Voice type Premiere cast[3]
30 January 1917
(Conductor: Max von Schillings)
Guido Bardi, Prince of Florence tenor Rudolf Ritter
Simone, a merchant baritone Felix Fleischer-Janczak
Bianca, his wife soprano Helene Wildbrunn


3 flutes (3rd doubling piccolo). 3 oboes (3rd doubling English horn), 3 clarinets in B flat/A (3rd doubling E flat clarinet), bass clarinet, 3 bassoons (3rd doubling contrabassoon), 6 horns, 4 trumpets, 3 trombones, bass tuba, timpani, percussion (cymbals, bass drum, side drum, triangle, tambourine, tam-tam, sleigh bells, xylophone, glockenspiel), harp, celesta, mandoline, and strings.


Place: Simone's residence in Florence
Time: 16th-century

Simone, a Florentine merchant, suspects that he is being cuckolded by Prince Guido whom he discovers at home with his wife Bianca on returning from a business trip. He sells Guido a robe and offers the prince everything that he has in his house; Guido chooses Bianca. Simone takes Bianca to her room and asks her to spin, which she refuses to do. After he leaves, Bianca declares that she hates her husband and wishes him dead. Overhearing this, Simone reflects further on adultery and death. He leaves Guido and Bianca alone together and the two lovers express their devotion. When Guido is about to go home, Simone challenges him to a fight, first with swords, then with daggers, before Simone finally overcomes Guido and strangles him. Bianca, admiring her husband's strength, rushes to embrace him and the two are reconciled as the curtain falls.



  1. ^ re-released in 2003; recording made at the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam, with the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra
  2. ^ concert recording made at Radio France, Salle Olivier Messiaen, September 2003 with the Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France
  3. ^ Live recording Konzerthaus Wien 20 May 2010



  1. ^ a b "Alexander Zemlinsky – Eine florentinische Tragödie, op. 16". Universal Edition. Retrieved 14 August 2010. 
  2. ^ "Upcoming performances". Universal Edition. Retrieved 14 August 2010. 
  3. ^ Casaglia, Gherardo (2005). "30 January 1917". L'Almanacco di Gherardo Casaglia (in Italian). Retrieved 6 August 2014.