3 Oct 2010

Giacomo Puccini (1858-1924)

From Composer of the Week, 9:00 am on 3 October 2010
Giacomo Puccini

Giacomo Puccini Photo: A Dupont, United States Library of Congress, Public Domain

Success was not always immediate for Giacomo Puccini. With the première of his opera Madame Butterfly at La Scala Milan, Puccini and his team were convinced of a triumph. The reality was the opposite. Puccini described it as a 'real lynching'.

There was silence when there should have been applause; jokes were made; animal noises were imitated; and whistles and boos followed the final curtain. Puccini believed the hostile reception had been planned in advance by a rival publisher.

The opera was never seen again at La Scala during Puccini's lifetime but it quickly made its way around the world receiving the accolades it deserved.

Music Details:

PUCCINI: O Mio Babbino Caro, from Gianni Schicchi –Renata Tebaldi; The Farewell Tour  – sourced from itunes

PUCCINI: Piccolo Walzer S. 66, from Puccini the Organist - Passacaille 952

PUCCINI: Cum Sancto Spiritu from Messa di Gloria - EMI 5 57159

PUCCINI: Donna non vida mai, from Manon – Pearl EVC III

PUCCINI: Questo mar rosso, from La Boheme - Decca 421 049

PUCCINI: Si, mi chiamano Mimi, from La Boheme - Decca 421 049

PUCCINI: Tosca, end of Act 1 – EMI CDS 7 47175

PUCCINI: Tosca, excerpt from Act 2 – EMI CDS 7 47175

PUCCINI: Un Bel di, from Madame Butterfly – Decca 411 634

PUCCINI: Chi il bel Sogno, from La Rondine - EMI 5 57955

PUCCINI: Liu Funeral music - EMI CDS 7 47971

PUCCINI: Nessun Dorma from Turandot - Decca 467 620