Il campanello

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Il campanello or Il campanello di notte (The Night Bell) is a melodramma giocoso, or opera, in one act by Gaetano Donizetti. The composer wrote the Italian libretto after Mathieu-Barthélemy Troin Brunswick and Victor Lhérie's French vaudeville La sonnette de nuit. The premiere took place on 1 June 1836 at the Teatro Nuovo in Naples and was "revived every year over the next decade".[1]

Performance history[edit]

The opera was presented in Italian at the Lyceum Theatre in London on 6 June 1836 and in English on 9 March 1841. It was also given in English in 1870. It was first performed in Italian in the US in Philadelphia on 25 October 1861; this production went on to New York three days later. An English translation was seen in that city on 7 May 1917.[2]

While today it is very rarely presented, it was given in an English translation by the Santa Fe Opera in 2007 as part of a pre-season "One Hour Opera" series presented in town.


Role Voice type Premiere Cast, 1 June 1836
(Conductor: - )
Serafina, a young bride soprano Amalia Schütz
Don Annibale Pistacchio, an apothecary, her husband bass Raffaele Casaccia
Spiridione, Don Annibale's servant tenor Domenico Ronconi
Madama Rosa, Serafina's aunt mezzo-soprano
Enrico, Serafina's cousin baritone Giorgio Ronconi


Time: Early 19th century
Place: Naples[3]

Don Annibale Pistacchio, an old doctor, has just married the young Serafina. Enrico, Serafina's former lover, constantly interrupts the wedding night by ringing the night bell. He appears in several disguises and asks the unfortunate groom to fill a list of preposterous prescriptions.


Year Cast:
Serafina, Enrico,
Don Annibale, Madame Rosa
Opera House and Orchestra
1983 Agnes Baltsa,
Angelo Romero,
Enzo Dara,
Biancamaria Casoni
Gary Bertini,
Orchestra of the Wiener Symphoniker and the Wiener Staatsoper Chorus
Audio CD: CBS,
MK 38450
1995 Anna Rita Taliento,
Leo Nucci,
Enzo Dara,
Cinzia De Mola
Fabrizio Maria Carminati,
Orchestra and Chorus of Teatro Regio di Torino,
(Recorded at performances in the Teatro Regio, Turin, May)
Audio CD: BMG Ricordi,
Cat: 74321 35613-2,
Cat: RFCD 2024.1
1996 Madeline Bender,
Shon Sims,
Samuel Hepler,
Barbara Kokolus
Christopher Larkin,
Orchestra and Chorus of the Manhattan School of Music,
(Recording of a performance at the Manhattan School of Music, April)
Audio CD: Newport Classic,
Cat: NPD 85608



  1. ^ Black 1982, pp. 35—36
  2. ^ Weinstock 1963, p. 351 refers to UK and US productions
  3. ^ Osborne 1994, p. 248
  4. ^ Recordings on

Cited sources

  • Osborne, Charles, (1994), The Bel Canto Operas of Rossini, Donizetti, and Bellini, Portland, Oregon: Amadeus Press. ISBN 0-931340-71-3
  • Weinstock, Herbert (1963), Donizetti and the World of Opera in Italy, Paris, and Vienna in the First Half of the Nineteenth Century, New York: Pantheon Books, 1963. LCCN 63-13703

Other sources

External links[edit]