Wikipedia talk:WikiProject Opera

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A selection of August and September's new articles...

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Composer and Opera of the Month Proposals

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Composer of the Month for November, 2019

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Opera of the Month for November, 2019

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Composer of the Month for December, 2019

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Opera of the Month for December, 2019

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Composer of the Month for January, 2020

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Opera of the Month for January, 2020

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Archives – Table of Contents
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Note Do not archive this section. Voceditenore (talk) 14:04, 3 September 2018 (UTC)

As of September 2018, there are over 3000 opera-related articles classed as "stubs". The full list can be found at Category:Stub-Class Opera articles. If you have some free time, consider checking these once in a awhile to see if the class still applies. Some may well have been considerably expanded since they were last rated. Or you may find a potentially useful/important topic that you could expand or nominate for the monthly collaborations. Voceditenore (talk) 14:03, 3 September 2018 (UTC)

Article creation and cleanup requests[edit]

Note Do not archive this section. Voceditenore (talk) 10:17, 1 August 2018 (UTC)

Past creation and cleanup requests are archived here. Voceditenore (talk) 11:29, 30 March 2015 (UTC)

Article requests
Cleanup requests
Voceditenore (talk) 18:48, 31 March 2015 (UTC)
This list is updated weekly, on a Tuesday (according to its History list). Scarabocchio (talk) 20:11, 5 April 2015 (UTC)

Image requests[edit]

Note Do not archive this section. Voceditenore (talk) 10:17, 1 August 2018 (UTC)

List here any articles for which you would like an image or any current images which could use cleanup or improvement.

WikiProject X[edit]

Note Do not archive this section. Voceditenore (talk) 10:17, 1 August 2018 (UTC)

This is an initiative to improve WikiProjects and other subject-area collaborations on Wikipedia through research, design, and experimentation. The archive of their past newsletters is here. The WikiProject X coordinator is Harej. – Voceditenore (talk) 11:20, 30 March 2015 (UTC)

Free subscriptions to databases[edit]

Note Do not archive this section. Voceditenore (talk) 10:17, 1 August 2018 (UTC)

Voceditenore (talk) 10:53, 10 January 2013 (UTC) Updated by Voceditenore (talk) 07:57, 4 November 2015 (UTC)

Opera articles: Recordings - which to exclude?[edit]

Note Do not archive this section. Voceditenore (talk) 10:17, 1 August 2018 (UTC)

As there has been no further discussion on this since early December 2010, I've archived this here. But this is a topic we may want to revisit at some point, re expanding/clarifying the current article guidelines. Voceditenore (talk) 08:37, 26 January 2011 (UTC)

The latest discussion (January 2014) is archived here. – Voceditenore (talk) 09:12, 3 July 2014 (UTC)

Greetings from the German language Opera Project[edit]

Note Do not archive this section. Voceditenore (talk) 10:17, 1 August 2018 (UTC)

Hello, just wanted to say Hi! from the German language Opera Project. We started in the beginning of 2011, a very recent effort compared to you. Likewise, our average articles on operas, composers etc. are quite behind the en:WP in terms of coverage and content. Which is a shame, considering the richness of opera life in Germany, Austria and Switzerland. We have started by focussing on the widely read articles on popular operas, see this List, which gives page impressions in de:WP and en:WP and also global number of productions per year as a proxy for popularity. The rationale is this: given our low number of contributors, having 20 formerly poor articles on popular operas turned into solid works is worth more then 20 more articles on arcane subjects. How did you go about growing your project? PS: Maybe there could be some areas of cooperation, especially as regards access to and understanding of German language sources and literature. Let me know what you think. --Non mi tradir (talk) 16:49, 5 September 2011 (UTC)

  • I have introduced this timely proposal to the discussion here. --Smerus 20:27, 6 September 2011 (UTC)
One of the reasons can be found in the people who worked on this project years ago. Back around 2005-2006, there was an opera fan who took on a personal mission to improve opera in en.WP. This is User:Kleinzach. It's not only that he improved articles. He was an excellent promoter of the cause, enlisting a number of people from the email list OPERA-L, who, along with him, abridged their email participation because they felt that contributing to WP was a better cause. He was very helpful and encouraging to those who wanted to help. These people in turn took off on their own. (He inspired me to create a WP account back in 2006, though I didn't contribute to WP:OPERA back then). As I have often remarked on Wikipedia, it's not just about adding information - it's about creating and maintaining a social environment that makes people want to contribute. - kosboot (talk) 18:39, 8 October 2018 (UTC)

Articles needing libretto links[edit]

Note Do not archive this section. Voceditenore (talk) 10:17, 1 August 2018 (UTC)

Note that for now some of the Rossini librettos can still be accessed from the list on this page on Karadar, but it will require adding those new links to the articles, and I'm not sure how long it will be before Karadar closes that loop hole. Anyhow, here's the list of operas so far where I've removed dead links and there is currently no other alternative. It's also possible to recover some of the karadar links via the Wayback machine, as was done at L'éclair, although it's a bit fiddly. If you add a new link, just strike through the opera name(s) below. Voceditenore (talk) 16:55, 13 November 2012 (UTC)

Help! Does anyone know how to access Karadar these days? It appears to be a dead link - and I've tried to get into it via a couple of ways. Viva-Verdi (talk) 16:15, 24 March 2014 (UTC)
Hi Viva-Verdi. It appears to have disappeared in all its guises–.com, .org. and .it. I have a feeling they ran into copyright problems with some of their stuff. It's not showing up on Google searches at all and see this wacky note. I have found this other site which has links to zillions of libretti. Hopefully, you'll find the one(s) you're looking for. Best, Voceditenore (talk) 18:06, 24 March 2014 (UTC)

Le domino noir (only score found), Sigurd (opera), Ciro in Babilonia, Sigismondo, Ricciardo e Zoraide, Eduardo e Cristina, L'equivoco stravagante, I Capuleti e i Montecchi, Médée (Charpentier), Emilia di Liverpool, Francesca di Foix, Il signor Bruschino

Spam links to watch out for[edit]

Note Do not archive this section. Voceditenore (talk) 10:17, 1 August 2018 (UTC)

Tool for finding all pages currently linking to a particular domain

  • Commercial site based in Italy selling streamed opera recordings. Had been added to 20 singer and opera articles. Voceditenore (talk) 10:45, 11 May 2015 (UTC) Not yet blacklisted

Requested opera templates[edit]

Note Do not archive this section. Voceditenore (talk) 10:17, 1 August 2018 (UTC)

Archived at Wikipedia talk:WikiProject Opera/Archive 120. Voceditenore (talk) 09:46, 19 June 2015 (UTC)

Place new requests here. Voceditenore (talk) 10:29, 1 August 2018 (UTC)

Almanacco Amadeus – Che disastro![edit]

Note Do not archive this section. Voceditenore (talk) 10:17, 1 August 2018 (UTC)

It's disappeared again. All links now redirect to this site. I'm keeping an eye out to see if the almanacco re-surfaces, but so far it's nowhere to be found on the new site. Grrrr! Voceditenore (talk) 15:49, 18 June 2017 (UTC)

It's finally available again: --Rodomonte (talk) 22:16, 3 January 2018 (UTC)
I attempted to adapt Template:Almanacco to the new URL and its parameters; it seems to work. Lamentably, I discovered only later that Rodomonte had already modified de:Vorlage:Almanacco similarly – that template hadn't been linked to the EN template via interwiki links (now corrected). -- Michael Bednarek (talk) 14:18, 13 March 2018 (UTC)
Thanks so much for that, Rodomonte and Michael! Not only for the good news but for fixing the template too. Brilliant! Voceditenore (talk) 16:16, 16 March 2018 (UTC)

New article about a place where opera was likely performed[edit]

Hello all...I just started an article, Hickford's Long Room, about a concert hall in London (1713 - c. 1779) in which opera was likely performed. Looking up the name "Hickford's" in or brings up articles from the era, with the names of singers and instrumentalist performers. At a glance, I would say there is potential to bring out some of these early obscure opera performers and give them a modern presence in the new article. I may add some myself, but my main interest is the instrumentalists. Welcome to anyone.Jacqke (talk)


Could anybody review this draft? Thanks a lot! --Offenbacherjung (talk) 00:03, 25 July 2019 (UTC)

I did a bit of formatting. For roles, I suggest that you say - instead of "Masetto ("Don Giovanni")" - "appeared as Masetto in Mozart's Don Giovanni". (note: composer, title italic instead of quotation marks, no brackets). I bet you can do that yourself, - I am busy. --Gerda Arendt (talk) 20:20, 14 August 2019 (UTC)
The draft is not mine. It’s the work of a mentee of mine from the German Language Wikipedia. Thank you. --Offenbacherjung (talk) 11:11, 26 August 2019 (UTC)

unsourced synopsis?[edit]

Hi folks --

A few weeks ago, I started the article Blind Injustice (opera). Since then, someone added a lengthy synopsis that reads rather like the insert from a program. It is unsourced, and I'm curious about whether it is the copyrighted text of the program synopsis. I'm not very familiar with WP's representations of opera, and I wonder how this relates to norms for opera articles. Copyright violation would obviously be a problem. What about the unsourced synopsis? What are the norms for this? Thanks - Kenirwin/(talk) 15:13, 14 August 2019 (UTC)

As you say, copyvio would be a problem, but a synopsis is typically not souced, as in novels and similar works. --Gerda Arendt (talk) 18:34, 14 August 2019 (UTC)
To me, it does not read as if it's copied from a synopsis from a program (which would probably have more literary "finesse"). It reads more like the editor was just describing what was going on as it happened. - kosboot (talk) 20:06, 14 August 2019 (UTC)
Thanks @Gerda Arendt: & @Kosboot:.Kenirwin/(talk) 01:49, 25 August 2019 (UTC)
@Gerda Arendt: & @Kosboot: do you think it's ok to remove the citation-needed tags for those sections? Is there anything we can point to that exempts plot synopses from the need for citations? Thanks Kenirwin/(talk) 21:53, 26 August 2019 (UTC)
There are no tags in plot, only singers and recording --Gerda Arendt (talk) 05:57, 27 August 2019 (UTC)

Article move[edit]

I just noticed that the opera L'Orione was just moved to Orione (opera). I'm not certain I agree with this decision as it is not consistent with other opera articles. Best.4meter4 (talk) 23:03, 27 August 2019 (UTC)

I also disagree with this move, but then I note that many other Cavalli operas are also titled without the definite article (Ormindo, Artemisia (Cavalli) etc., .... although La Calisto) so we should seek consistency....I would support adding (back) the definite article wherever appropriate to the names given by the composer (and adjusting the lead where necessary to make the original name clear). The justification for this would be that omitting the indefinite article is in effect a translation to English; but the operas are not so well known that the title without the indefinite article is the work's "common name" in English.--Smerus (talk) 08:22, 28 August 2019 (UTC)
I moved it back, - would need discussion with 3 people disagreeing. I don't know about his other operas. --Gerda Arendt (talk) 08:39, 28 August 2019 (UTC)
OK, but it would be helpful to have a consensus relating to all the Cavalli operas (and others) on this issue. At present L'Orione and La Calisto are the odd ones out for Cavalli - so the overall situation remains unresolved. But cf. L'Orfeo of Monteverdi, Schutz's Die Dafne which is titled Dafne (Opitz-Schütz), La Flora, Rossi's Orfeo (Rossi) etc. etc., so we need to determine a policy here --Smerus (talk) 12:28, 28 August 2019 (UTC)
Call it guideline ;) - inconsistency will happen as long as we use "common name", changing with the whims of what is common. Going to sing on Sunday, guests from the US here, - no time for such matters ;) --Gerda Arendt (talk) 12:57, 28 August 2019 (UTC)
My own feeling is that the definite article should always be included unless there is significant evidence of English language publications consistently leaving out the definite article in relation to that particular opera. Usually scholarly articles in English leave the definite article in, and I see no reason for wikipedia to be any different.4meter4 (talk) 15:35, 28 August 2019 (UTC)
In favour: Recordings all seem to include the definite article (e.g. L'Ormindo, L'Orione, La Calisto..... Grove gives for Monteverdi L'Orfeo and L'Arianna - but for Cavalli it lists the operas without definite article....Although this (very brief) survey is not conclusive, I would support a policy/guideline to include the definite article.--Smerus (talk) 15:58, 28 August 2019 (UTC)
I'm not sure that consistency is good for more than one way of settling WP disputes, but I'll second L'Orione. Fwiw, of several operas the one with a Grove Opera entry is J. C. Bach's, so Orione (Cavalli) if disambiguation is needed. Sparafucil (talk) 08:50, 29 August 2019 (UTC)

Help request[edit]

I'd like some opinions at this discussion please: Wikipedia talk:WikiProject Classical music#Richard Nanes.4meter4 (talk) 02:55, 29 August 2019 (UTC)

Librettist and composer one person[edit]

Some, but few, composers write their own opera libretto. I think in such cases, the name should appear in two places in the infobox. A revert such as this tells me that others think the librettist should be assumed to be the composer when not filled. What do you think? --Gerda Arendt (talk) 13:13, 31 August 2019 (UTC)

Of course composers should be listed as librettist if they wrote it. Wagner's operas do that, as do the works by Berg, Berlioz, Klebe, …, where appropriate. Not having a librettist in the infobox leaves a curious gap. -- Michael Bednarek (talk) 13:49, 31 August 2019 (UTC)
You say "of course", but Nikkimaria obviously thinks differently, and said so on her talk. --Gerda Arendt (talk) 14:52, 31 August 2019 (UTC)
Of course there is no need to duplicate in this way. Nikkimaria (talk) 02:45, 1 September 2019 (UTC)
There's no consensus here or at Template talk:Infobox opera to omit the composer as librettist in the infobox. It is also not common practice (see works by the composers mentioned above). I expressed my opinion that this is not straight duplication but a necessary fact about the work at User talk:Nikkimaria#A Clare Benediction. -- Michael Bednarek (talk) 02:50, 1 September 2019 (UTC)
Surely there are examples where the librettist is unknown. If this field is left blank, is the reader expected to assume that the composer is also the librettist, or should the word "unknown" or "anonymous" be inserted, in order to remove any doubt?—Jerome Kohl (talk) 03:05, 1 September 2019 (UTC)
If I saw such an omission I would assume it was unknown or had not been filled in. I would not automatically assume that I was meant to understand that the composer had also written the libretto. –Roscelese (talkcontribs) 04:50, 1 September 2019 (UTC)
As an outside observer, and also as a copy editor who has encountered this question before, I think the librettist parameter should be documented in the template as to be used only if the composer is not also the librettist. I agree with omitting it in the Sirens article, which goes on to say that Riehm was the librettist. Jmar67 (talk) 10:29, 1 September 2019 (UTC)
Jmar67, that doesn't address the issue raised by Jerome and Roscelese about the ambiguity of not stating the librettist. It also goes against the principle of infoboxes as such, and against established practice for the composers mentioned above. The removal of composers as librettists seems a recent and limited phenomenon. If consequently thought through, none of the items in an infobox were needed – which is a different discussion we're not going to have any more. -- Michael Bednarek (talk) 11:53, 1 September 2019 (UTC)
No one here is arguing for removal of other parameters, just one in the case that it is redundant - a well-established principle of "infoboxes as such". For example, {{infobox person}} omits a number of parameters (eg |birth_name=, |residence=, and others) in the case that they are the same as others already in use, and the assumption in that case is not that they are simply unknown. There is no reason to believe that an average reader, seeing a prominent display of "Opera by Riehm", would assume that there is some third-party additional creator that we simply haven't bothered to fill in. Nikkimaria (talk) 14:05, 1 September 2019 (UTC)
Why on earth would an average reader not assume this? The birth_name parameter is completely different because it's reasonable to assume that people who haven't had a name change/use a pseudonym are going by their birth name. Who is out there assuming that composers are generally also librettists? –Roscelese (talkcontribs) 14:33, 1 September 2019 (UTC)
Because the displayed information is not "Composer: X", it is "Opera by X". The average person told that a work is by X will assume that X is responsible for the whole work, unless told explicitly otherwise. Nikkimaria (talk) 17:05, 1 September 2019 (UTC)
Unless, of course, that "average person" is familiar with the opera business, where this identity is rare. There are also isolated cases where the composer worked on the libretto with one or more other people. Would it be correct in these circumstances to credit the libretto only to the others?—Jerome Kohl (talk) 22:42, 1 September 2019 (UTC)
The word "composer" has more than one meaning, putting things together, but in opera and classical music, it means the person who writes the music, and I'd say even to the average person it means that. I'd think further that even most of these average persons will know that typically the composr is not also the author of the text, and even those who might assume it, will not be hurt by reading the name twice. --Gerda Arendt (talk) 05:47, 2 September 2019 (UTC)
The word "composer" is never displayed in the infobox to the reader, only to the editor - it does not make any difference what the average person understands by that term, because they don't see it. Nikkimaria (talk) 15:43, 2 September 2019 (UTC)
I've noticed that before, that the assumption is made that the creator is the composer. I think that should be corrected. Historically there are operas where the librettist is considered more significant than the composer. - kosboot (talk) 16:01, 2 September 2019 (UTC)
I am reminded of theatrical musicals in which the sole composer can be credited with "Words and music by ...". Maybe the template here needs a separate parameter for dual music/libretto attribution. Jmar67 (talk) 05:31, 2 September 2019 (UTC)
The template is intentionally simple. I don't agree that it "needs" such a change. We can simply do what we did before, mention the composer in the librettist parameter also if he wrote it or influenced the writing, just please without being reverted. --Gerda Arendt (talk) 05:41, 2 September 2019 (UTC)
The list of authors (composer/librettist) for an opera is a bit similar to those of a film. There, we list director, producer, writer, cinematographer, composer, and actor, even if they are all the same person; see e.g. Modern Times. That way, an infobox can deliver what its name promises. -- Michael Bednarek (talk) 07:30, 2 September 2019 (UTC)
Comment. As a reader, I would not assume automatically if the composer is listed but not the librettist, that the composer is also the librettist. I would assume the article is incomplete and missing that information. Composer clearly indicates who wrote the music and not who wrote the words. Librettist clearly indicates who wrote the text and not the music. They are two separate tasks and the words are not interchangeable. I would further note that musical articles, where composers who write words is more common, give clear distinctions between composer and lyricist in the infobox even when they are the same person. See the infobox at Into the Woods for example. We should do the same.4meter4 (talk) 20:34, 2 September 2019 (UTC)
The infobox at Into the Woods labels the participating artists differently from the one under discussion here. This one displays only "Opera by X", not "composer: X" or "music by: X". Nikkimaria (talk) 21:13, 2 September 2019 (UTC)
Repeating: the oomposer is the one who makes an opera an opera, while a libretto is a book. I can't believe that anybody reading about an opera will not know that. The analogy to "birth-name" as an optional paramater is wrong, because I don't know an opera without libretto, - it's a something that always should be filled. The documentation could perhaps be clarified. --Gerda Arendt (talk) 21:20, 2 September 2019 (UTC)
Nikkimaria, I see what you mean. It's design is somewhat confusing. I also see where Gerda Arend is coming from, as many libretti were set to music by multiple composers. Pietro Metastasio for example would often have more than a dozen composers set music to just one libretto, thus creating more than a dozen different operas. However, Gerda that practice is not true of working composers and librettists today. Libretti are now written for single work use (thus making them unique to the opera and just as much a part of the creation as the music), and writing teams sometimes collaborate differently then in the past with the words being added after the music in some cases, or altered to better suit the music, or creating alongside each other, etc. In other words, it can be a more organic creative process between the two artists who are working together to make an opera, and authorship belongs to both of them, as the music can inspire the words, or the words can inspire the music. I personally would suggest using a different structure for the infobox on opera articles with composer and librettist as listed titles. This avoids the most confusion, and is more fair to creative teams that work in a more interlinked way where they are both equally responsible for the final product. An opera is more than it's music. It's story and text are equally as important.4meter4 (talk) 22:19, 2 September 2019 (UTC)
4meter4, I had little influence on inobox opera. and believe we should wait with changes until Voceditenore returns. Until then, of reverts of the entry - leaving that to the article writer - would be appreciated. Infobox musical composition has the possibility to give two parameter equal weight, composer and librettists, in the rare cases (such as hymn) that it is so. --Gerda Arendt (talk) 05:24, 3 September 2019 (UTC)
While I would not have used the parameter in this case, I do agree that the reversion was not justified, considering that the template documentation does not prohibit its use in this situation. This should be resolved at the template level, not here. Jmar67 (talk) 06:38, 3 September 2019 (UTC)
Few people watch the template, and we shouldn't make it more complicated without the main contributors Voceditenore (who is on vacation) and Andy. Andy, can you perhaps already think of a way to modify for situations, when the article is about several operas on one libretto? My primitive approach would be to give them each an infobox. --Gerda Arendt (talk) 10:07, 3 September 2019 (UTC)
I can't see how an infobox or several can be used for articles like Artaserse or Il re pastore (libretto). Presenting the operas in prose or as a list is the only practical way. As for the design of the Template:Infobox opera itself: it went through extensive review before the current form found consensus. The current treatment of |composer=, integrating it into the line "<work> by <composer>" below the title seems quite elegant to me. The majority of editors here, all but 1½, have expressed the need for a consistent infobox entry for the librettist, even if it's the composer. This has been standard practice for all the well known composers who wrote their on librettos. There is no reason not to codify this in Template:Infobox opera/doc. -- Michael Bednarek (talk) 11:11, 3 September 2019 (UTC)
Could you do that, please? --Gerda Arendt (talk) 11:14, 3 September 2019 (UTC)
The librettist should definitely be listed, even if it was the composer. Leaving it blank in such cases is misleading in the extreme. The wording in the doc was unilaterally changed in April 2017 after 4 years of simply "person/people who wrote the text" to "person/people who wrote the text, if different from composer" with zero discussion and the misleading edit summary consisting of simply "add" by Nikkimaria [1]. It was quite rightly reverted by Michael Bednarek the next day [2]. It should/could be made explicit in the documentation. e.g. by adding "If the composer wrote the libretto, he/she should be listed as librettist." Apropos of all this is that sometimes operas have co-librettists—the composer and a second person. What do you do? Leave out the composer's name because it's "redundant" and let the reader assume that only the second person wrote the libretto? Or add it and make it inconsistent with all other operas where the composer wrote the libretto but is not listed? I also agree with Michael re integrating the composer into the line "<work> by <composer>" below the title. The phrase "Opera by" clearly implies "composed by" in all opera articles, hence Category:Operas by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Category:Operas by Giuseppe Verdi. etc. etc. despite them having some very distinguished librettists. Voceditenore (talk) 09:19, 4 September 2019 (UTC)
If the infobox is meant to be a one-stop shop for all the basic information, then either the librettist needs to always be mentioned, or we add a "Composer and librettist" option for those circumstances. The presumption if a librettist is not listed is pretty much never that the composer wrote the libretto, it's that we didn't bother to list the librettist in the infobox. I'm sure you can find a wealth of operas where, either now or at some point, no-one bothered to credit the librettist. Then there's cases like Antigonae where it's actually kind of a mess. I don't THINK Orff substantially wrote the libretto to that one, but the infobox is no real use to figuring it out. Adam Cuerden (talk)Has about 6.9% of all FPs 05:35, 5 September 2019 (UTC)
One other thing to ponder is Einstein on the Beach, which, while not a simple case, does manage to eliminate half the partnership from the infobox. I'm pretty sure Glass did write the libretto, such as it is, sort of, except the bits he didn't... Really, we could use a more robust infobox. Adam Cuerden (talk)Has about 6.9% of all FPs 06:08, 5 September 2019 (UTC)
The Einstein one is easily fixed by listing both Glass and Wilson as the librettists per [3], which I have now done, although some sources put ‘libretto’ in single quotes to indicate its unusual nature. I have also added clarification about the opera's text to the Antigonae article with references. The opera is actually a line-by-line setting of Hölderlin's play, although Orff did not consider the play to be a libretto per se and Hölderlin did not write it for that purpose. Given that, the "based on" parameter is adequate. The robustness of the opera infobox should not be judged by the very few outlier cases like these. Incidentally, the bulk of the Antigonae article was written in 2002 (!), and needless to say, lacks the adequate inline citation that is now expected. Voceditenore (talk) 10:11, 5 September 2019 (UTC)
I certainly don't mean to propose that the infobox could handle every edge case, I'm just pointing out that the edge cases help explore the issues. If it's to be presumed that no librettist listed means the composer wrote it, Mozart and Salieri would be presumed to not be a near-exact, only slightly-abridged setting of Pushkin's play, because the assumption would be that the composer made a libretto based on the play. The assumption with Antigonae would be that the text was reworked into new lyrics, instead of being an exact setting. We need to be specific, because otherwise, it's far, far more confusing if things get even slightly complex. Always credit librettist, even if same as composer, means that the edge cases are handled without problem by using based on and other such things. Alternatively, if we want to have a joint parameter, that's fine too. The only wrong decision is to not be explicit that the composer and lyricist are the same. For wikidata purposes, it's probably better to have both composer and lyricist parameters, and maybe a display change if {{{composer|A}}} == {{{lyricist|B}}} - the bit after the |'s serving to kill off the "both null" possibility, which could occasionally happen in a ballad opera. Adam Cuerden (talk)Has about 6.9% of all FPs 23:34, 5 September 2019 (UTC)
The composer parameter is already available to Wikidata, it is simply rendered visually as "Opera by X" beneath the opera's title. As I said before, the phrase "Opera by" is widely interpreted as "Opera composed by" c.f. Category:Operas by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart etc. There's no need to repeat that composer parameter inside the box. If the composer was also the librettist, his/her name should be repeated in the "librettist" parameter. The consensus here is that leaving out the "Librettist" parameter in these cases is misleading and ambiguous. However, I see your point about these outlying cases where the libretto is verbatim from a source, but there is no intervening librettist as such. Interestingly, sources vary on how they express this. In the case of Mozart and Salieri, some list Pushkin as the librettist. Some list Rimsky-Korsakov as the librettist based on Pushkin, and some simply give Pushkin's play as the source text with no intervening librettist.
For infobox purposes in such cases I suppose one could list the composer as "Librettist" and the source text in "Based on" and clarify in the article text that the composer set the source text verbatim or almost verbatim. Rimsky-Korsakov apparently made some cuts in the Pushkin text, but no additions. Or one could list the author of the text as the librettist, although strictly speaking, they did not write a libretto, they wrote a play. In any case, that would also be clarified in the text. Either one would probably be near enough. Alternatively, we could have a special parameter in these cases labelled "Libretto" which would be filled with something like "Alexander Pushkin's play Mozart and Salieri". On another point... if the librettist is unknown or anonymous that should be listed in the "Librettist" parameter to make that explicit, and again avoid ambiguity. Voceditenore (talk) 17:14, 6 September 2019 (UTC)
Aye. I say we tweak the infobox to add options for edge cases, but always say. Adam Cuerden (talk)Has about 6.9% of all FPs 01:12, 9 September 2019 (UTC)

Term wanted[edit]

Toward the end of Prelude and Liebestod from Tristan und Isolde ((Wagner), there is a very moving, minute-long chromatic progression over about two octaves that I interpret as a continuous change of key. Is there a term for this compositional technique? Jmar67 (talk) 05:18, 2 September 2019 (UTC)

In neither the Prelude or the Liebestod is there a continuous change of key. Can you cite specific range of measures in either the prelude or the Liebestod? - kosboot (talk) 12:43, 3 September 2019 (UTC)
Please listen to this from 15:30 to 16:30. Jmar67 (talk) 05:20, 4 September 2019 (UTC)
I think now that this passage is a good example of the chromaticism that is cited in the case of Tristan in particular. Jmar67 (talk) 11:16, 4 September 2019 (UTC)
@Jmar67:: I thought that might be the passage you're talking about, and there's no specific term for that. Despite its intentionally ambiguous start, the Liebestod is in B major; this is pretty much established by the second "Seht ihr's nicht?" and certainly by "Hör ich nur diese Weise." With that as context, the passage you're talking about begins and concludes on the dominant - it is one continuous build up to the tonic resolution at the words "Welt-Atems." As you observed, this is done with a chromatically rising line in the upper lines as expressed by the violins. Despite the various harmonies, it's all a reinforcement of the dominant chord on F-sharp major (which remains consistent in the bass line), a very chromatic elaboration of a centuries-old idea, the rule of the octave (although the rule presumes the beginning and end are the tonic, whereas in the Liebestod it's on the dominant). Chopin does this kind of thing (chromatically descending lines, rather than ascending) in many of his works, particularly in the mazurkas; think also of the concluding portion of the 3rd movement, the section in F major in the Piano Concerto No. 2 (Chopin). Like I said, there's no specific term for this, other than a description such as "chromatically rising line supported by underlying changing harmonies that reinforce the dominant." - kosboot (talk) 12:37, 4 September 2019 (UTC)
@Kosboot: Thank you. A friend of mine had an opinion: "The compositional technique is known as a sequence - a repeated pattern starting on different notes. ex. You hear it in J. S. Bach, other Baroque composers, and too many other composers to name. A sequence does not predetermine the harmonic relationship between the different notes/harmonies that begin the repeated pattern. This is each composer's decision for the particular piece and/or historical period OR The composer may be an innovator and use this compositional technique in a new way." As to the key, it simply sounds to me as if the key keeps changing. Jmar67 (talk) 12:26, 5 September 2019 (UTC)
But it's not exactly a sequence which, as you say is a repeated pattern. That pattern is good for a few measures but changes when it gets to "Wie sie schwellen" and certainly at "soll ich lauschen?" after which is not a sequence at all. I think my description above is more accurate. - kosboot (talk) 13:41, 5 September 2019 (UTC)

Suite from Der Rosenkavalier, Op. 59[edit]

I am heading to a concert Saturday which is performing the Suite from Der Rosenkavalier, Op. 59. I'd never heard it before, and was surprised to find in googling it that Strauss himself had nothing to do with the arrangement. Given that the work is performed with some regularity by orchestras, and that it's really a creation separate from the opera (although the opera is the source material), should this work have it's own wikipedia page separate from the opera?Here are the Chicago Symphony Orchestra's program notes if you are unfamiliar with the work. Best.4meter4 (talk) 01:17, 18 September 2019 (UTC)

That all depends on whether there are enough accurate reliable-source citations with enough accurate information to create an independent article on it. There is a degree of disagreement over its genesis and whether Strauss liked it, disliked it, or had anything even remotely to do with it. Obviously from a copyright standpoint there is an issue of how it could have been legally created (and performed) without his permission. And so on. Softlavender (talk) 01:39, 18 September 2019 (UTC)
Agreed, but I don't think any of that presents issues which aren't already raised in citable sources. What is an issue is what work that title is referring to. According to this book, there's actually more than one work with that name. That's a problem that should also be addressed in the article. There's also a considerable number of commercial recordings made of the piece: [4]. That alone makes it worthy of it's own article in my opinion.4meter4 (talk) 02:16, 18 September 2019 (UTC)
Here is an article by All Music, [5], and here is a gramaphone review for one of the many recordings [6]. There's a lot of references out there, many of which highlight the work's murky origins. 4meter4 (talk) 02:32, 18 September 2019 (UTC)

Editor creating an astonishing number of articles on random recordings of operas[edit]

This editor is creating an astonishing number (50 over the past 10 weeks) of massive articles on random recordings of operas, all very puff-y, and all cited (when cited) to non-clickable sources (although many could probably be made clickable if they bothered to use the internet). I think they need to be stopped in their tracks and most of the articles need to be AfDed. Help/eyes/solutions needed. Thanks. Softlavender (talk) 09:28, 18 September 2019 (UTC)

I looked at about ten articles, and I don’t see much to be alarmed about. There are offline references cited, but there’s nothing wrong with offline references. The fact that some may be available online as well is neither here nor there as they are references also available in print. The albums in questioned were reviewed in notable publications like Gramophone, at least the ones I looked at. I don’t think any of these would lose an AFD. I would suggest assuming good faith and making any improvements to the articles (like online urls for sources) that seem beneficial. Best.4meter4 (talk) 10:24, 18 September 2019 (UTC)
I too came across some of these articles. Several have received significant awards, all articles I saw quote reviews, positive and and negative, from notable authors in notable publications. These articles seem to be far better than most articles about non-classical albums. They all need work of some kind, but I don't see any reason to stop the editor in their tracks or take the summarily to AfD. -- Michael Bednarek (talk) 12:40, 18 September 2019 (UTC)
Several points/issues:
1) What exactly is the point of these articles? I appreciate that they are no worse, and indeed a lot better, than most WP articles on pop albums. Vut they are absurdly over the top - mostly details of personnel and compilations of reviews. They are really effectively WP:UNDUE in spirit it seems to me and don't add much (if anything) to the stock of encyclopaedic knowledge. In fact they are a licence to any opera (or classic music) performer to post up similar compilations as articles about their own recordings.....
2) At present it seems none of these articles seem to have links to the main WP opera articles (or vice versa). That in itself seems to ignore a basic principle of WP. But (following on from 1) should we in fact post links from the main opera articles to these articles? - as they are about commercial recordings of works which have many other recordings, are we not, by leaving them standing, conceding them a sort of marketing priority, and making the articles effectively commercial puffs?
3) Really it seems to me that what would be more 'encyclopaedic' would be to whittle these down to the bare essentials as parts of a series of articles '[Operaname] (discography)'. There is already Così fan tutte discography which lists details of the recording this guy has made an article out of - his article doesn't seem to me to add much to the details in the existing discography - just a blow-by-blow listing of the tracks and extensive chunky quotes from three reviews (probably in fact copyright infringements). As life is too short I haven't examined any of the other articles in any great detail.
Just saying.......Smerus (talk) 15:46, 18 September 2019 (UTC)

The only advantage I could see of having individual album articles is that it would be easier to cross reference and categorize the albums in different ways, and it would be advantageous for critical commentary purposes on that individual recording. For example, the Solti Marriage of Figaro could just as easily fit in a study of Solti's extensive discography as it does within the discography of history of the opera itself, or it could be looked at from a discography perspective of the London Philharmonic Orchestra or as a part of the discography of the various artists involved. The other advantage is its less work than writing a single article on all recordings of a work, which takes a lot more research and time and dedication. Regardless, the articles exist now, and they easily pass WP:N.4meter4 (talk) 15:56, 18 September 2019 (UTC)

Yes, but as I look at more of them, what they don't pass is WP:COPYVIO. All of the comments frorm reviewers, which take up the vast bulk of the text of the articles (as opposed to listings of tracks) are in effect direct transcription, with occasional changes of tense and to the passive mode , e.g. "The recording, he thought, bore many traces of its origin in a theatrical production, and these were highly advantageous. Above all, the conducting of Colin Davis brought a genuine feeling of developing drama, with taut rhythms,....." That is definitely not kosher, and needs to be addressed.Smerus (talk) 16:13, 18 September 2019 (UTC)

Ugh. That's a headache. 4meter4 (talk) 16:19, 18 September 2019 (UTC)
Yes, this is a problem. He should use direct quotations, rather more sparingly. I don't object to the articles as such - with 170,000 bios of footballers, and 15,000 fungus taxa, what the hell .... Johnbod (talk) 17:09, 18 September 2019 (UTC)
I disagree with that assessment. I'm familiar with many of the albums, and some of them are quite important. The Solti Marriage of Figaro recording for example won the 1983 Grammy Award for Best Opera Recording. If you do a little digging, I think you will find all of the recordings satisfy at least criteria one of notability guidelines you just mentioned. Many of the recordings have been reviewed in Gramaphone, Opera News, The New York Times, etc. Frederica Von Stade is a major artist, so her work does get significant enough media coverage to pass notability.4meter4 (talk) 21:05, 18 September 2019 (UTC)
Please re-read WP:WikiProject Classical music/Guidelines#Notability of recordings. They all fail all of those criteria. Criterion 1 specifically says "Some of these works must contain information beyond a mere critical review of the recording. In other words, critical reviews in several publications are not enough in themselves to establish the need for a separate article. If all you have are reviews, quote them in the discography section of the artist's or work's article." Significant coverage is specifically not enough for a classical-music album article. One or two awards is also specifically not enough for a classical-music album article. -- Softlavender (talk) 21:34, 18 September 2019 (UTC)
A Grammy Award winning album not notable enough? Seriously?4meter4 (talk) 21:42, 18 September 2019 (UTC)
Not for a classical-music album. Please read WP:WikiProject Classical music/Guidelines#Notability of recordings. -- Softlavender (talk)
That’s a wikiproject suggestion page with no enforcement as policy across the encyclopedia. The guidelines for albums at WP:Notability (music) are less stringent.4meter4 (talk) 21:52, 18 September 2019 (UTC)
It is the notability guideline for classical-music albums. All Wikipedia notability guidelines utilized at AfD are guidelines. These are the guidelines for classical-music albums, distinct from all other album guidelines. The notability guideline for other types of albums is at WP:NALBUM, which has a specific hatnote directing to the notability guideline for classical-music albums. Softlavender (talk) 22:00, 18 September 2019 (UTC)
Hallo everyone! Please forgive me for not joining in your discussion earlier - I've only just discovered it. Please forgive me too if the album articles that I've been creating as adjuncts to the Frederica von Stade article have been inappropriate. I began them after noticing that the articles A Carnegie Hall Christmas Concert and Frederica von Stade - Mahler Songs had been in existence since 2009, so I imagined that if these two articles had been allowed to stay on Wikipedia for a decade, it would be acceptable to add some more of the same kind. I'm very sorry if, as a Wikipedia novice, I've either written too many articles or written them in a way that I shouldn't have. I've tried to make what I've contributed as accurate, fair and interesting as I could, and if I've failed to reach the standard that Wikipedia requires, I can only apologize.Niggle1892 (talk) 23:09, 18 September 2019 (UTC)
Hi Niggle1892, we call that WP:OTHERCRAPEXISTS -- just because another similar article has somehow remained on Wikipedia does not mean you should continue to create articles which do not meet Wikipedia notability guidelines, especially not after having been advised on your talkpage to desist. On Wikipedia, unless a classical-music album rises to the importance of, say, Glen Gould's Goldberg Variations, it does not meet Wikipedia's notability threshold. See WP:WikiProject Classical music/Guidelines#Notability of recordings. The problem was not the way in which you wrote the articles; the problem is that they should not have been created in the first place. As the guideline states, you are free to quote reviews of the albums, and any award they received, on von Stade's wiki article. But please don't create articles on albums themselves. Thank you. Softlavender (talk) 23:24, 18 September 2019 (UTC)
Not exactly! I agree with others above that some of the recordings pass the very high bar of the policy (mainly on awards), but there was a very big problem with the extended disguised quotation of reviews, creating WP:COPYVIOs. You either have to quote fully ("like this"), or summarize and reword the text much more than you were doing. But thanks for coming here! Does anyone have suggestions for something useful for an energetic & enthusiastic new editor to do? Johnbod (talk) 23:34, 18 September 2019 (UTC)
The notability bar regarding awards for classical-music albums is at least three major awards "a number of major awards", which none of the albums received, so none of the albums pass WP:WikiProject Classical music/Guidelines#Notability of recordings on awards or any of the other criteria. Softlavender (talk) 23:44, 18 September 2019 (UTC)
Reviews have been my biggest headache. Direct quotations breach copyright. Brief excerpts are selective and therefore compromise neutrality. Paraphrases and summaries inevitably introduce at least a slight distortion of what the reviewer wrote. No solution seems really satisfactory.Niggle1892 (talk) 00:10, 19 September 2019 (UTC)
Concise quotations, and snippets of quotations, do not breach copyright, and as long as you aren't cherry-picking and thus misrepresenting the reviewer's view, they do not mislead. Softlavender (talk) 00:16, 19 September 2019 (UTC)
I think the trouble is that an opera album in particular is such a multi-faceted thing that it usually elicits a review which is simply too complicated to be capable of being summarized fairly. On the three-awards rule, I think it's the case that the Grammys are the only major classical awards which are searchable online, so a three-award criterion would pretty much eliminate classical records from Wikipedia altogether. Niggle1892 (talk) 00:37, 19 September 2019 (UTC)
You need not summarize the entire review. Simply excerpt the most salient or notable point, in the briefest manner possible. It's a skill, but it's a skill that can be developed or learned. Read the Broadway review snippets quoted in any of the good Wikipedia articles on musicals, for example (like this one [7]), and you'll get the idea. In terms of awards, various awards are mentioned all over the place online; they don't have to have a searchable database. See Category:Classical music awards, for instance. Softlavender (talk) 00:51, 19 September 2019 (UTC)
@Softlavender: I don't think this is correct. WP:CMG is not a guideline, at least not in the technical Wikipedia sense. If you scroll to the top, you'll see a banner that says:

This page is an essay on style. It contains the advice and/or opinions of one or more WikiProjects on how to format and present article content within their area of interest. This WikiProject advice page is not a formal Wikipedia policy or guideline, as it has not been thoroughly vetted by the community

That's not to say it's not a useful resource to consult, but it does not have the same force of consensus behind it as WP:NALBUM, or WP:GNG. Colin M (talk) 00:46, 19 September 2019 (UTC)
Personally, I disagree. Surely you can see that out of the dozens of recordings of any given classical music work, if Wikipedia has articles of only one or two versions, that's a major problem, and vastly non-neutral and promotional. Since classical-music albums, unlike most popular-music albums, are not original works, there must be a much much higher threshold for any given classical-music recording to be given encyclopedic status. Softlavender (talk) 00:55, 19 September 2019 (UTC)
Softlavender, that's a big assumption with several glaring errors. First, there are works that are old that have never been recorded, so while the music is old, it's arrival on a recording is singularly new. Second, classical music is still growing with new compositions and recordings of new music being done every year. Third, other genres of music rehash songs all the time. Just because someone else recorded it doesn't mean it isn't notable. This Elvis Presley album for example, How Great Thou Art, does not have any original music on it. Good music gets recorded again and again no matter what genre.4meter4 (talk) 02:33, 19 September 2019 (UTC)
Just a final word of thanks to everyone who has tried to help me to be a better contributor. I won't write any more articles about albums - to be honest, after today I'm not sure that I want to write any more articles about anything - but if the ones that I've already perpetrated are spared the axe, I'll maybe go back to them and try to revise their "Critical reception" pages to condense them into a selection of quotes. I won't add links to, because that site is unfortunately for subscribers only. Finally, I hope that Wikipedia will make its notability criteria for classical recordings less stringent. To me it seems that première recordings of operas by Haydn, Rossini, Thomas, Massenet or Heggie are worth a Wikipedia page whether they win a Grammy or not.Niggle1892 (talk) 03:12, 19 September 2019 (UTC)
I hope you won't be discouraged - this episode seems to have started a discussion on the guideline/essay. There's no reason not to use subscription-only sites at all, though open access one are obviously preferable, other things being equal. Johnbod (talk) 03:42, 19 September 2019 (UTC)
Niggle1892, I too would like to add my sincere hope that you will not be discouraged by this episode and I thank you for your work. All of us here at the Opera Project were new editors once and I would bet the farm that there is not one of us who would not be acutely embarrassed by some of our early efforts. Want to see my first article? It was back in 2006—badly formatted, reeking of puffery, and devoid of inline citations with the only "sources" listed as external links, all of which were closely connected to the subject. I also agree with 4meter4's views on the current inappropriateness of the Classical Music Project's guidelines for album notability which have been cited in some of the comments here and I have joined the discussion on Wikipedia talk:WikiProject Classical music/Guidelines. And per Johnbod, I want to reiterate that there's no reason not to use subscription-only sites or material from hard-copy books and journals which are not online at all, provided full bibliographic details are provided. I do it all the time, although my articles are now inline-cited to within an inch of their lives. SMirC-crazy.svg Once again, thank you for your work and best wishes, Voceditenore (talk) 09:39, 19 September 2019 (UTC)
Thank you both for being so very positive, kind and sympathetic. It'll be fascinating to see if the community does decide to treat classical records as liberally as it does other genres.Niggle1892 (talk) 11:49, 19 September 2019 (UTC)
User:Niggle1892, I want to also encourage you to continue editing wikipedia, and not be discouraged when you unwittingly make some sort of contributing error. I made so many in my first year of editing, and it was the editors in this wiki project that really helped me be a better contributor. I suggest you join this wiki project and ask for advice here. It's a good group who is happy to offer valuable assistance. Further, I see nothing wrong with the subject matter you have chosen to write on. It's a valuable addition to the encyclopedia and clearly fits in with policy. Unfortunately, WP:WikiProject Classical Music adopted an essay (which is not policy) which tried to subvert policy written at WP:ALBUM; which caught your articles in the middle of something that wasn't your fault. This essay contradicts policy which to my mind doesn't follow policy at WP:POLCON, WP:NPOV, WP:N, WP:MUSIC, and WP:CREEP. Sometimes issues like this come up, and when they do it's good to be able to know policy well enough to challenge what editors are doing or attempting to do which may not adhere to policy. I recommend taking some time to familiarize yourself with policy because it can have an impact on your work; usually for the good. I also encourage you, and any other editors reading this discussion, to comment at Wikipedia talk:WikiProject Classical music/Guidelines#NPOV Problems with recording guideline; particularly after you've read through wikipedia policy pages. Hope to see more articles from you.4meter4 (talk) 14:59, 19 September 2019 (UTC)

I join with others in applauding Niggle1892's interest, desire to communicate and (not least) industry. Like some of the other editors above, my initial career editing WP was stormy (to say the least). I have supported the proposal to delete the Classical Music guideline on recordings. But I do feel that WP:NALBUM should apply as regards notability, and that standard journal reviews do not count, in this context, as "multiple, non-trivial, published works appearing in sources that are reliable". Moreover it is just not on to paraphrase long sections of reviews as article content. This risks contravening both WP:COPYVIO and, particularly , WP:UNDUE. If a third party's opinion has no special implications for the article's subject or on posterity's opinion of the subject, or if it does not show something notable or original in contemporary opinion, it is imo just not worth relaying. Similarly it seems to me that giving details of all the tracks on a recording, or commenting on the recording's artwork, is also not 'encyclopaedically' relevant. But to be constructive, I think (for what it is worth) that Niggle1892's ambitions and WP's ethos could be better combined by creating an article Frederica von Stade discography in which contents, other artists, awards (if any) could be mentioned, and leaving out (unless in some way exceptional or notable) critics' waffle, and lists of tracks where the recording is of a single work. They are paid to fill a page: WP editors work I think to fulfil different norms. Strangely there don't seem to be on WP (yet) discography articles of classical music performers, but there are plenty of pop musician discographies which could suggest an appropriate outline format. Er -- that's it. Smerus (talk) 15:45, 19 September 2019 (UTC)

Actually, Smerus, check out Category:Opera singer discographies (6 of them, 7 if you count Andrea Bocelli), plus 15 for classical pianists, 12 for classical conductors and several more for classical musicians and singers in the generic Category:Classical music discographies. Best, Voceditenore (talk) 16:04, 19 September 2019 (UTC)
Another point. See WikiProject Albums/Album article style advice#Article body. It's only a guidance essay (like the Classical Music Project recording notability stuff), but artwork/packaging, track lists, etc. are considered encyclopedic by that project and are used in many album articles, including FAs, e.g. Highway 61 Revisited, Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band, Achtung Baby, In Utero, etc. etc. Voceditenore (talk) 16:24, 19 September 2019 (UTC)


Proposal to delete all portals, including Portal:Opera, with no notification to Wikiprojects using portals. Adam Cuerden (talk)Has about 6.9% of all FPs 13:24, 20 September 2019 (UTC)

Please see Wikipedia talk:Notability (music)#Proposal to permanently remove hatnote to Wikipedia:WikiProject Classical music/Guidelines[edit]

Opinions, whatever they may be, are welcome.4meter4 (talk) 23:43, 20 September 2019 (UTC)

Wikipedia:Articles for deletion/A Carnegie Hall Christmas Concert[edit]

I would appreciate some comments at this discussion, whatever your opinion may be.4meter4 (talk) 16:54, 21 September 2019 (UTC)

Classical recordings and WP:ALBUM guidelines[edit]

  • Dear all - In the course of an exchange in which Niggle1892 has dealt in an exemplary fashion with my spleneticism, he has mentioned that that he has been working with guidelines from WP:ALBUM, a WP of which I had not previously been aware. I have suggested that it might be appropriate and constructive for those interested to raise a discussion at WP:ALBUM on appropriate guidelines for classical albums, as the project seems at present to be overwhelmingly devoted to popular music. That might help to resolve some of the issues which have arisen here and elsewhere on this topic.Smerus (talk) 16:18, 25 September 2019 (UTC)

Windsor Light Music Theatre[edit]

Started out doing operetta in 1949. There's a discussion at Talk:Windsor Light Music Theatre#Notability, if anyone is interested. Voceditenore (talk) 10:16, 11 October 2019 (UTC)