Volume of six rare opera libretti (five by Handel, one by Ariosti) all but one in first edition. George Frideric HANDEL.
Volume of six rare opera libretti (five by Handel, one by Ariosti) all but one in first edition
Volume of six rare opera libretti (five by Handel, one by Ariosti) all but one in first edition
Volume of six rare opera libretti (five by Handel, one by Ariosti) all but one in first edition
Volume of six rare opera libretti (five by Handel, one by Ariosti) all but one in first edition
Volume of six rare opera libretti (five by Handel, one by Ariosti) all but one in first edition
Volume of six rare opera libretti (five by Handel, one by Ariosti) all but one in first edition
Volume of six rare opera libretti (five by Handel, one by Ariosti) all but one in first edition

Volume of six rare opera libretti (five by Handel, one by Ariosti) all but one in first edition

Thick octavo. Full contemporary ivory vellum with "Opern" within decorative rules at head of spine. With fine decorative woodcut device to titles and decorative woodcut head- and tailpieces and initials throughout.

All in three acts.

CORIOLANUS [music by Attilio Ariosti 1666-1729]
Cajo Marzio Coriolano, Drama. Da Representarsi Nel Regio Teatro d'Hay-Market, per La Reale Accademia di Musica. London: Printed by Tho. Wood in Little Britain, 1723.
1f. (recto half-title, verso blank), 1f. (recto title, verso blank), [v] (dedication to the Duchess of Newcastle by N. Haym), [iii] ("Argomento"), [iii] ("Argument"), [i] (named cast list in Italian), [i] (named cast list in English), [2]-79, [i] (blank) pp. With text in Italian and English on facing pages.
Named cast includes Francesco Bernardi, "call'd Senesino," Francesca Cuzzoni, Margherita Durastanti, Anastasia Robinson, Giuseppe Boschi, Gordon, and Gaetano Berenstadt.
First performed in London on February 19, 1723 to a libretto by Niccola Francesco Haym with music by Ariosti.
?First Edition (COPAC calls this a 2nd edition). No early editions located.
Not in Sonneck.

"At the beginning of 1720 [Ariosti] was in Paris for a state wedding, and he might have stayed there until a few months before the production of his Caio Marzio Coriolano in February 1723. This was by far the most successful of the operas he composed or reworked for the Royal Academy, and it was the only one revived in London. Its original success owed a great deal to the prima donna, Francesca Cuzzoni, who had made her sensational London début one month earlier (in Handel's Ottone), but it likewise owed much to Ariosti's expressive setting of Pariati's excellent libretto." Lowell Lindgren in Grove Music Online.


OTTONE. [HWV 15]
Ottone, Re di Germania. Drama. Da Rappresentarsi Nel Regio Teatro d'Hay-Market, per La Reale Accademia di Musica. London: Printed by Tho. Wood in Little Britain, 1723.
1f. (recto half-title, verso blank), 1f. (recto title, verso blank), [v] (dedication to the Count of Halifax by N. Haym), [i] ("Argomento), [i] ("Argument"), [i] (named cast list in Italian), [i] (named cast list in English), [2]-67, [i] (blank) pp. With text in Italian and English on facing pages.
Named cast includes Francesco Bernardi (Senesino), Francesca Cuzzoni, Goschi, Margherita Durastanti, Gaetano Berenstatt, and Anastasia Robinson.
First performed in London at the King’s Theatre on January 12, 1723 to a libretto adapted by Nicola Francesco Haym from Stefano Benedetto Pallavicino’s Teofane (1719, Dresden),
First Edition.
HWV p. 200.
Sonneck p. 840.
Dean p. 449.

The first new opera in the Royal Academy of Music's fourth London season. "The most important event of the 1722–3 season as far as the public were concerned was the arrival of the soprano Francesca Cuzzoni, a worthy match to Senesino, and it was Handel’s new opera Ottone in which she made her début." Anthony Hicks in Grove Music Online.


TAMERLANO. [HWV 18]
Tamerlano: Drama. Da Rappresentarsi nel Regio Teatro di Hay-Market, per La Reale Accademia di Musica. London: Printed and Sold at the King's Theatre in the Hay-Market, 1724.
1f. (recto title, verso blank), [iv] (dedication to the Duke of Rutland by N. Haym), [i] ("To the Reader" in Italian), [ii] (("To the Reader" in English), [i] (named cast list in Italian), [i] (named cast list in English), [2]-99, [i] (blank) pp. With text in Italian and English on facing pages.
Named cast includes Andrea Pacini, Francesco Borosini, Francesco Bernardi, Guiseppe Boschi, Francesca Cuzzonni, and Anna Dotti. Small paper repair to lower margin of pp. 29/30 just affecting tailpiece on p. 29 and two words of text on p. 30.
First performed in London at the King's Theatre on October 31, 1724 to a libretto by Niccola Francesco Haym after Agostino Piovene.
First Edition.
HWV p. 237.
Sonneck p. 1049.
Dean p. 564.

"Two comparably great though very different masterpieces dominated the next season. Tamerlano, which opened the season (31 October 1724), and Rodelinda (13 February 1725) are comparatively restrained in instrumentation, but possess a taut dramatic power to which it is hard to find a parallel in opera of this period." Anthony Hicks in Grove Music Online.


ELPIDIA [HWV A1]
L'Elpidia, overo Li Rivali Generosi. Drama per Musica. Da Rappresentarsi Nel Regio Teatro di Hay-Market, per La Reale Accademia di Musica. The Words compos'd by Signor Apostolo Zeno. The Musick by Signor Leonardo Vinci, except some few Songs by Signor Gioseppe Orlandini. London: Printed, and Sold at the Opera-Office in the Hay-Market, 1725.
1f. (recto title, verso blank), [i] (cast list in Italian), [i] (cast list in English), [i] ("Argomento"), [i] ("Argument"), [7]-45, [i] (blank) pp. Text in Italian, with summaries of scenes in English. Small paper repair to lower margin of pp. 45/46 just affecting tailpiece on p. 45; contemporary annotation in ink to lower margin of blank p. 46.
Named cast includes Boschi, Senesino, Pacini, Cuzzoni, Borosini, and Sorofini.
A pasticcio first performed on May 11, 1725 to a libretto by Apostolo Zeno with music by Handel, Leonardo Vinci and Giuseppe Maria Orlandini.
First Edition.
HWV p. 344-345.
Not in Sonneck.

"Elpidia was Handel's first pasticcio. He arranged the whole and composed the recitatives. Haym took the libretto from Zeno's I rivali generosi... Most of the aria texts were lifted with their music from Vinci's Ifigenia in Tauride and Rosmira fedele and Orlandini's Berenice, the three newest operas produced at the San Gioivanni Gristostomo theatre in Venice only a few weeks earlier... For the first time London audiences were confronted with the pre-classical style based on harmonic rather than contrapuntal bass lines and florid voice parts that go their own way rather than developing ritornello material. Handel's quickness in seizing the latest fashion, which he was soon to digest and make his own, is remarkable." Dean p. 321.


SCIPIONE [HWV 20]
Scipione. Drama. Da Rappresentarsi Nel Regio Teatro di Hay-Market; per La Reale Accademia di Musica. London: Printed, and Sold at the King's Theatre in the Hay-Market, 1726.
1f. (recto title, verso blank), 1f. (recto argument in Italian and English, verso cast list in Italian), [i] (cast list in English), [2]-63, [i] (blank) pp. Text in Italian and English on facing pages. Lower margins of two leaves trimmed affecting last line of text but not affecting legibility; small portion of upper outer corner of pp. 41/42 lacking affecting several words.
Named cast includes Baldi, Francesco Bernardi, Antinori, Boschi, Francesca Cuzzoni, and Constantini.
First performed in London at the King's Theatre on March 12, 1726 to a libretto by Paolo Antonio Rolli based on Antonio Salvi's Publio Cornelio Scipione (1704, Livorno), after Livy, Historiarum ab urbe condita, xxvi, 50.
?First Edition.
HWV p. 261 (two editions published in 1726, one published by Thomas Edlin and the present edition, not assigning precedence).
Not in Sonneck.
Dean p. 623.

"Scipione was Handel’s eighth full-length opera for the Royal Academy of Music. There were 13 performances in the first run, with a cast consisting of the castratos Senesino and Antonio Baldi (Luceio [Luceius] and Scipio), the sopranos Francesca Cuzzoni and Livia Costantini (Berenice and Armira), the tenor Luigi Antinori (Lelio [Laelius]) and the bass Giuseppe Boschi (Ernando). The opera was written in unusual haste; Handel completed the score only ten days before the first performance, having taken – according to the librettist, Rolli – just three weeks to compose the music; signs of hurry are occasionally apparent both in the music (the overture borrows from two of Handel’s recorder sonatas) and the libretto (the last recitative repeats the words of an earlier aria)." Anthony Hicks in Grove Music Online.


FLAVIO [HWV 16]
Flavio Re de' Longobardi. Drama. Da Rappresentarsi Nel Regio Teatro di Hay-Market. The Second Edition. London: Printed for T. Wood in Little-Britain, and are to be sold at the King's Theatre in the Hay-Market, 1732.
1f. (recto title, verso "The Argument"), 3 (named cast list in English and Italian), 4-47, [i] (blank) pp. The "Argument" is in English only, with text in Italian and English on facing pages.
Named cast includes Campioli, Senesino, Strada, Bagnolessi, Bertolli, Mantagnana, and Pinacci.
Second edition.
First performed in London at the King's Theatre on May 14, 1723 to a libretto by Nicola Francesco Haym adapted from Mateo Noris's Il Flavio Cuniberto (1682, Venice).
HWV p. 210.
Not in Sonneck.
Dean p. 477.

"Flavio was Handel’s fourth full-length opera composed for the Royal Academy of Music; its eight performances ended the 1722–3 season at the King’s Theatre... Handel revived Flavio at the King’s Theatre on 18 April 1732, when the bass Montagnana took over the role of Ugone (originally tenor) and the tenor Pinacci the role of Lotario (originally bass); this reversal of voices actually restored Handel’s first plan for the opera, Acts 1 and 2 having been originally written for this combination. Chrysander’s edition largely ignores the pre-performance and 1732 versions of the opera." Anthony Hicks in Grove Music Online.

"The operas of the Academy period are generally more serious in tone (the enjoyable exception is Flavio (1723)..." Anthony Hicks in Grove Music Online.

Very slightly worn, browned, and soiled; very occasional minor foxing; minor dampstaining to lower inner margins; remnants of contemporary blue/gray wrappers to extreme inner margin of some half-titles; margins slightly trimmed occasionally just touching catchwords or signature designations; occasional other very minor defects.

An attractive collection of rare libretti of some of Handel's best-known works. Item #29523

Price: $6,500.00  other currencies

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