Monday, July 18, 2011

The William Tell Finale

I cannot bring myself to say that William Tell is a great opera. But perhaps I was a little hard on it in the post below. The great moments it has are absolutely glorious, and none moreso than in the finale Tutto cangia, il ciel s'abbella. This is a finale fully worthy of a great composer's swansong. Last night, it reminded me of Wagner, today it reminds me more of the grand finales to Tchaikovsky's amazing ballets and operas. Rossini would live as many years in retirement as he did in the rest of his life. But he could not have improved on this passage had he composed at the same frantic rate until his passing at 76.

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