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Curtis Price and Louise K. Stein

Semi-opera [ dramatic opera; English opera; ambigue ] A play with four or more separate episodes or masques which include singing, dancing, instrumental music and spectacular scenic effects such as transformations and flying. The form, which flourished in England between 1673 and 1710 , is further characterized by a clear demarcation between the main characters, who only speak, and minor characters – spirits, fairies, shepherds, gods and the like – who only sing or dance. Most semi-operas are tragicomedies adapted from earlier plays. The finest examples are those

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Opera ballo (It.: ‘opera dance’ ) Term used for the Italian variant of French grand opéra , of which Verdi’s Aida is the prime example.

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Opera-torneo (It.: ‘opera-tourney’ ) A tournament with music in an operatic style, cultivated mainly in the 17th century at the ducal courts of northern Italy and in Paris, Vienna and Munich. See Tourney .

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Julian Budden

Opera semiseria (It.: ‘half-serious opera’ ) An intermediate genre first identified during the early 19th century. The term was originally applied mainly to Italian equivalents of the French post-revolutionary ‘pièce de sauvetage’ such as Paer’s Camilla ( 1799 ) or Simon Mayr’s Le due giornate ( 1801 ), sometimes labelled ‘drammi eroicocomici’. Later it was extended to comedies, akin to the French comédie larmoyante , that contain a strong element of pathos. The range of characters is generally wider than in opera buffa , but the same types prevail

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Piero Weiss and Julian Budden

Opera buffa (It.: ‘comic opera’ ) The term ‘opera buffa’ was first applied to the genre of comic opera as it rose to popularity in Italy and abroad over the course of the 18th century. At first, ‘opera buffa’ did not appear as a designation in the librettos. Like ‘opera seria’, it was used in informal writings (letters, memoirs etc.) and in ordinary conversation, with reference to the spectacle as a whole. Librettists, even in the lowlier comic genre, had literary pretensions and accordingly entitled their work in ways that emphasized its status as

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Marita P. McClymonds and Daniel Heartz

Opera seria (It: ‘serious opera’ ) A term used to signify Italian opera of the 18th and 19th centuries on a heroic or tragic subject. The term was rarely used at the time; it can sometimes be found on manuscript scores, particularly in the last quarter of the 18th century, but ‘dramma per musica’ is the usual genre description on most 18th-century and many early 19th-century printed librettos. ‘Opera seria’ appears occasionally on librettos late in the 18th century, for example for Prati's Armida abbandonata ( 1785 , Munich). Only as serious opera of

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Number opera (Ger. Nummernopera ; It. opera a numeri ) Term for an opera consisting of individual sections or ‘numbers’ which can readily be detached from the whole, as distinct from an opera consisting of continuous music. The term is best applied to the various forms of 18th-century opera, including opera seria , opera buffa , opéra comique , ballad opera and Singspiel as well as to some 19th-century grand operas. Under the influence of Wagner’s ideas about the relationship between opera and drama, the number opera became unfashionable, and neither

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Howard Mayer Brown, Ellen Rosand, Reinhard Strohm, Michel Noiray, Roger Parker, Arnold Whittall, Roger Savage and Barry Millington

Burletta ; Chamber opera ; Comédie-ballet ; Divertissement ; Drame lyrique ; Dramma giocoso ; Dramma per musica ; Entrée ; Extravaganza ; Farsa ; Favola in musica ; Festa teatrale ; Film musical ; Grand opéra ; Intermède ; Intermedio ; Intermezzo ; Jesuits ; Lehrstück ; Libretto ; Liederspiel ; Madrigal comedy ; Märchenoper ; Masque ; Medieval drama ; Melodrama ; Melodramma ; Monodrama ; Musical ; Music drama ; Music theatre ; Number opera ; Opéra-ballet ; Opéra bouffon ; Opera buffa ; Opéra comique ; Opéra féerie ; Opera semiseria ; Opera seria ; Operetta

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Koninklijke Vlaamse Opera (Flem.: ‘Royal Flemish Opera’ ) Company founded in Antwerp in 1893 ; it was known simply as the Vlaamsche Opera until 1920 .

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Laura Otilia Vasiliu

Romanian Opera of Iaşi [ Opera Română din Iași ] Romanian opera company. Public cultural institution hosting opera, operetta, and ballet performances. The activities of the opera are carried out alongside the Vasile Alecsandri National Theatre in one of the most beautiful theatres in Romania, a historical monument built in the late 19th century. The opera was founded in 1956 under the name Opera de Stat din Iaşi (‘State Opera of Iaşi’); since 2003 it has been known as Opera Naţională Română din Iaşi (ONRI, ‘The Romanian National Opera of Iaşi’). The

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Stephen C. Fisher

Sinfonia avanti l’opera (It.: ‘symphony before the opera’ ) An early term for a Sinfonia used to begin an opera, that is, as an Overture , as opposed to one serving to begin a later section of the work or as an instrumental number within an act.

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Howard Mayer Brown

In 

I. ‘Opera’ See Opera

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Flanders Opera Opera association formed between Antwerp (opera) (opera) and Ghent in 1982 .

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Jutland Opera Opera company founded in 1947 in Århus .

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Jyske Opera Opera company founded in 1947 in Århus .

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Scottish Opera Opera company founded in Glasgow in 1962 .

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Utah Opera Company based in Salt Lake City (opera) .

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Skylight Opera American company, founded in 1960 in Milwaukee (opera) .

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Minnesota Opera Company, formerly Center Opera, in Minneapolis and St Paul (opera) .

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Opéra (ii) The name commonly used by the Académie Royale de Musique, Paris; see Paris (opera) §2, (i) , Paris (opera) §3 , Paris (opera) §4, (ii) , Paris (opera) §5, (ii) and Paris (opera) §6, (i) .