- John Black
(b Rome, April 24, 1840; d Milan, July 29, 1924). Italian librettist and impresario . He began his working life as a playwright and literary critic but in 1868 was appointed stage director at La Scala, in which capacity he assisted with the preparations for the première of Aida in Cairo. In the 30 years from 1862 he wrote nearly 30 librettos and translated a number of others. Until the end of his life he ran a theatrical agency sending opera companies to South America. His librettos, of which Ruy Blas was the most frequently heard, were thoroughly romantic, illuminated by the historical extravagances of Parisian grand opera, and often incorporated important ballets.Iginia d’Asti, F. Sangiorgio, 1862; Guisemberga di Spoleto (tragedia lirica), Sangiorgio, 1864; Le due amiche (dramma lirico), T. Seneke, 1866; Graziella (idillio drammatico), D. Monti, 1869; Ruy Blas (dramma lirico), Marchetti, 1869; Il Guarany (opera-ballo, with ...