Vienna: Artaria e Comp. [PN] 2679, . Oblong folio. Quarter dark red cloth with blue textured cloth boards. 1f. (title), 1 ("Personaggi"), 2-103, 6 (upper pagination only), 111-148 (upper pagination numbered 1-38) [at 148 primary pagination ceases and continues with upper pagination 39-63], [i] (blank), 149-164, 6 (upper pagination only), 165-223 pp.
254 pp. in total. Complete. Engraved. Text in Italian and German.
With "Einzig rechtmäßige Ausgabe des Vollständigen Clavierauszug der Oper: Zelmira, unter Leitung des Compositeurs" at head of title and "... a Milano presso F. Artaria, e G. Ricordi. Lipsia Peters, e Breitkopf. Berlino Schlesinger. Bonna Simrok[!]. Magonza Schott. Monaco Falter" at foot.
Binding somewhat worn, warped, soiled, and bumped; hinges slightly wear. Minor foxing and soiling, somewhat heavier to title. An attractive copy overall.
First Edition, possibly the earliest recorded issue. Very rare.
We have compared the present copy with that at Pesaro, as well as with a copy in a private collection which appears to be earlier than Pesaro's, and in both cases the present issue is the earliest (priced "12 C.M.," not 15, and without "30.W.W." or the second title page of Act II). Most significantly, it does not contain the leaf mentioning the 1822 Vienna production and cast.
Zelmira, Rossini's final Neapolitan opera, was first performed at the Teatro San Carlo in Naples on February 16, 1822, to a libretto by Andrea Leone Tottola after Dormont de Belloy's Zelmire. "A vocally alluring showcase written with an eye to international audiences in Vienna and beyond," the opera was first performed there on April 13, 1822. Rossini added a chorus and an aria for Emma at the beginning of Act II for the Viennese premiere, both included in the present score. This would suggest that the present copy was published between February and April 1822, but before the first Viennese performance on April 13.
"Despite [its] primitive and outwardly violent plot, the opera, beautifully laid out for the solo voices, is essentially benign and classical in temper with the stress on the familial bonds between Zelmira, Ilo and Polidoro. There are many distinguishing touches in the orchestration and in the accompanied recitatives." Richard Osborne in Grove Music Online. Item #26699
Price: $2,800.00 other currencies