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Changing the ScoreArias, Prima Donnas, and the Authority of Performance$
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Hilary Poriss

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780195386714

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195386714.001.0001

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An Insertion Aria Speaks

An Insertion Aria Speaks

(p.169) chapter 6 An Insertion Aria Speaks
Changing the Score

Hilary Poriss

Oxford University Press

The lesson scene of Il barbiere di Siviglia serves as proof that although the practice of aria insertion was becoming extinct in the context of opera productions, some singers, spectators, and commentators still encouraged participation in this practice. After 1850, prima donnas and leading men again began integrating their own arias into operatic performances, thus asserting that there is no definite time in which the practice of aria insertion was entirely eliminated. This chapter provides the author’s account on the history and the evolution of the practice of aria insertion, the aria itself, and the singers who participated in such opera performances through introducing the “Memoir of a Song”, a literary performance about the theatrical life, and explains the relationship between musical works and those who bring such works to life.

Keywords:   aria insertion, aria, singers, Memoir of a song, theatrical life

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