Friday, April 22, 2011

Rustic Chivalry

I listened to Cavalleria Rusticana for the first time last night. It took me twenty-one years of opera fanaticism to get around to this. What in god's name was I waiting for? This is the music of Sicily. Not for nothing did Coppola set the ending of Godfather III to this opera (would that the movie were worthy of it's source). This opera is like Sicily (or at least my personal image of it) personified: the fanatical catholicism, the bloody vendettas, the warm climate, the sun-induced lust, the profound superstition. This is not opera, this is an episode of the Sopranos (and roughly the same length). So to all the haters who say that Italian verismo is simple-minded trash, I say...

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