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Artaserse(i) (‘Artaxerxes’)locked

  • Kurt Markstrom

Extract

Dramma per musica in three acts by leonardo Leonardo Vinci to a libretto by pietro Pietro Metastasio ( see Artaserse above); Rome, Teatro delle Dame, 4 February 1730.

Artaserse and its companion piece Alessandro nell’Indie were the last of a series of successful collaborations between Vinci and Metastasio before the poet departed for Vienna. They were first performed during the same season in which Porpora presented two operas at the neighbouring Teatro Capranica. According to Burney, Vinci set both operas ‘for half price, to gratify his enmity to Porpora’. Marpurg describes how each composer had his own theatre, group of singers and partisan followers, and even his own coffee-house where these followers gathered to discuss the merits of the two masters. The rivalry came to a climax when the Vinci party tried to sabotage the première of Porpora’s second opera, ...

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