This live performance of Verdi’s opera “I Lombardi” took place in Rome in 1969 and is considered by many to be one of the best-ever readings of the opera.
Although it has been available before, it is now being reissued for the first time with a complete, newly translated Italian-English libretto and in-depth notes and essays. The cast of soloists features some of the greatest voices of the period including Renata Scotto, Luciano Pavarotti, and Ruggero Raimondi.
I Lombardi, an operatic dramma lirico in four acts set to an Italian libretto by Temistocle Solera, which itself is based on an epic poem by Tommaso Grossi, was Giuseppe Verdi’s fourth opera. The first performance was given at the Teatro alla Scala in Milan on 11 February 1843. Verdi dedicated the score to Maria Luigia, the Habsburg Duchess of Parma who died a few weeks after the premiere. The opera however was highly controversial since it contained thinly veiled anti-Austrian sentiment which whipped crowds into a frenzy when it was first performed. Long neglected, it has become popular again in recent years for its high spirits and frequent moments of great musical beauty.
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