Milano: Edizioni Ricordi [PNs 42486-42502], . Folio. Half contemporary mid-tan leather with green pebbled paper boards, spine in gilt-ruled compartments, titling gilt, original publisher's upper wrapper illustrated in color bound in. 1f. (recto polychrome title with elaborate decorative borders lithographed by Doyen in Turin, verso blank, 1f. (recto named cast list for the first performances in Milan and Cairo, verso table of contents with plate and page numbers), iv, 293, [i] (blank) pp. Engraved.
Named cast includes Paride Povoleri, Maria Waldman, Teresina Stolz, Giuseppe Fancelli, Ormondo Maini, Francesco Pandolfini, and Luigi Vistarini for the Milan performance and Tommaso Costa, Eleonora Grossi, Antonietta Pozzoni, Pietro Mongini, Paolo Medini, Francesco Steller, and Stecchi-Bottardi for the Cairo performance.
Verso of title with a late 19th-century female singer's manuscript list of performances of Aida (in which she sang a priestess, and later Aida) in German cities in ink in a German hand. With frequent performance annotations and German text underlay in pencil, crayon, and brown and purple ink in several late 19th-century hands.
Binding quite worn; wrapper reinforced, with some loss to outer margin; endpapers somewhat browned and foxed. Some browning, foxing, soiling, and staining, heavier to outer leaves; upper margins of some leaves dampstained; some minor repairs, occasionally affecting music.
First Quarto Edition, second issue, with "PARIGI-ESCUDIER" to foot of title and the "Preludio" paginated in Roman numerals. Rare. Hopkinson 62A(b). Fuld, p. 590. Crawford p. 567.
Verdi's Aida was first performed in Cairo at the Opera House in December 24, 1871. The Italian première, to which Verdi devoted great attention, took place in Milan at the Teatro alla Scala on February 8, 1872.
"There is... one important aspect in which Aida remains the most radical and ‘modern’ of Verdi’s scores: its use of local colour. Aida, constantly alluding to its ambience in harmony and instrumentation, is the one Verdi opera that could not conceivably be transported to another geographical location. In this respect it was an important indication of the influence local colour would come to have over fin-de-siècle opera, and an object lesson on the delicacy and control with which this colour could be applied to the standard forms and expressive conventions of Italian opera." Roger Parker in Grove Music Online. Item #26400
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