Anagilda [L’Anagilda, o vero La fede ne tradimenti (‘Anagilda, or Faith Despite Betrayal’)]
- Brian W. Pritchard
[L’Anagilda, o vero La fede ne tradimenti (‘Anagilda, or Faith Despite Betrayal’)]
Dramma per musica in three acts by Antonio Caldara to a libretto by Gerolamo Gigli ; Rome, Palazzo Bonelli, 4 January 1711.
This opera, commissioned by Francesco Maria Ruspoli for Carnival 1711, was staged 13 times by 5 February and was perhaps the most frequently performed of all Caldara’s operas. Its plot is based on an incident in Bartolommeo de Rogatis’s Storia della perdita e riacquisto delta Spagna (1648) in which Fernando (soprano), Count of Castile, defeats Sancio, King of Navarra, and is betrothed to his enemy’s daughter Sancia (Anagilda, soprano, in the opera) but incarcerated by her brother Garzia (alto castrato). Eventually Anagilda rescues Fernando and they escape to Castile. Elvira (contralto), Fernando’s warrior sister, who confronts Garzia only to fall in love with him, is apparently Gigli’s invention. He further adapted the libretto for its Roman première, providing additional arias and, at Ruspoli’s request, comic scenes within the acts as well as independent intermezzos for Dorina (alto) and Grullo (bass)....