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The Master Musicians: Mozart$
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Julian Rushton

Print publication date: 2006

Print ISBN-13: 9780195182644

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195182644.001.0001

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Opera Seria ‘fitting the clothes to the figure’

Opera Seria ‘fitting the clothes to the figure’

(p.32) Chapter 4 Opera Seria ‘fitting the clothes to the figure’
The Master Musicians: Mozart

Julian Rushton

Oxford University Press

Mozart's first opera, the Latin drama Apollo et Hyacinthus marked no great advance in the two months following Die Schuldigkeit des ersten Gebotes, but it confirmed his ability to simulate human emotions from tenderness to rage. Eighteen months later, writing comedies, he could vary the forms more than was normally allowed in the procession of arias, laden with coloratura, that constitutes the bulk of an opera seria; but it is into this latter genre, epitomised by the librettos of Metastasio and the music of Hasse, that his other early operas fall. There are few traces of the reformist tendencies which had emerged mainly in Italian operas written for German centres.

Keywords:   Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, operas, arias, comedies

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