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News of Otsego County

Bob Moynihan

MOYNIHAN: From Dispossession, Pain, Persistence Yields Renewal

COLUMN

From Dispossession, Pain,

Persistence Yields Renewal

Glimmerglass’ ‘Traviata’ Tells Verdi Story

Toreros Tucker Reed Breder and Jorrell Lawyer-Jefferson perform in “La Traviata” this summer at The Glimmerglass Festival. (Karli Cadel/Glimmerglass Festival)

By ROBERT MOYNIHAN • Special to www.AllOTSEGO.com

The pain in Verdi’s life is reflected in his face – and in operas like Glimmerglass’ “Traviata.”

Independence personified, he was an artist of the highest rank in the 19th Century, a period of creative superlatives – what came to be known with the changed and now abused word, “genius.” He died in the first months of the 20th – within days of the departure of Victoria, Queen of Great Britain and, thanks to the fawning Disraeli, Empress of India.

Victoria and Verdi both have fame. However, the composer continued to grow and produce operatic masterpieces while the famous Queen driveled into increasingly somber oddities, filling her estates with gimcracks, loading her sentences with eccentric curlicues.

Of the two, Verdi is far more worthy of tribute – though outside of Italy is outdistanced in common English-speaking recognition. Each was marred by grief – Victoria for her Prince Albert, Verdi for his wife and two children, dead within three years after marriage.

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