4 pp. Octavo. Dated Genoa, January 9, 1880. Unsigned. Heavily worked, with extensive deletions and revisions.
An urgent and impassioned draft in which Verdi writes about six of his own works: his operas Aida, Rigoletto, Il Trovatore and La forza del destino and his vocal pieces Pater Noster and Ave Maria.
In something of a frenzy, the composer calls the recent performance of Rigoletto at La Scala "un fiasco" and that of Aida "un semifiasco." Verdi goes on to discuss Ricordi's publication of two of his recently-composed vocal works, the Pater Noster and the Ave Maria. He insists that Ricordi publish the Pater Noster as in the original and tells him that he will send him a copy of the Ave Maria to be issued as a piano reduction.
"It's not a matter of punishing anybody.. but I just wanted to avoid a bother with a new public flop. Nothing else... The conductor who was directing the choir must be able to read a short score, right?... Reduce the individual pieces in whatever hell of a key you want. I will send you the Ave Maria tomorrow or the day after, whose simple instrumental part you'll be able to reduce for the piano. So, at La Scala... a semi-fiasco with Aida, a fiasco with Rigoletto and I foresee one for Trovatore... how could it be otherwise? ... Without a single decent singer... In Rigoletto if the tenor is the best one, eternal God! imagine the rest of them! And in Trovatore! ... an ugly screeching..."
In a postscript to the document, Verdi discusses the possible staging of both La forza del destino and Aida in Naples, and suggests that Ricordi negotiate with Lampugnani in this regard:
"Interested in imploring you to stage Forza del destino in Naples... That theatre is better than many others. After that Aida and Rigoletto at La Scala we may very well do Aida in Naples... Make an agreement with Lampugnani. I'd be grateful for it."
Very slightly worn; creased at folds and at one corner.
The majority of the text of this document is unpublished (not included in the Carteggio Verdi-Ricordi). Only the text of the postscript is known, which Verdi sent to Ricordi as a telegram on January 11, 1880, two days after writing the present, somewhat heated, draft.
Verdi was characteristically quite involved in the business aspects of his art. The present document, relative to some of the most important works in the composer's oeuvre, lends important insight into his detailed and often somewhat heated dealings with his publisher Ricordi. Item #23370
Price: $15,000.00 other currencies