John Rosselli

The Life of Bellini

Reading sample

Musical Lives
Winner of the 1997 Royal Philharmonic Society Music Book Award

Boek (softcover)

Item no.771053
Author/ComposerJohn Rosselli
Scope196 pages; 14 × 21.6 cm
Release year1997
Publisher/ProducerCambridge University Press
Producer No.9780521467810
34.80 €
Delivery time approx. 1–2 weeks.
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Description Contents Resources Courses About the Authors

'A sigh in dancing pumps' was Heine's view of Bellini. His physical beauty, boundless success and untimely death at the age of thirty-three combined to give Bellini instant mythical status. But both the facts and the fantasies were to be embroidered by Bellini's close friend and eventual biographer Francesco Florimo, who distorted the posthumous image of the composer to the extent of altering or destroying letters in his possession. In John Rosselli's account of Bellini's life and music, a new picture of the composer emerges. He provides a more accurate view of Bellini's personality, his relationships and his short but dazzling career in Naples, Milan and Paris. He introduces the operatic world of the early nineteenth century, the singers of Bellini's roles, and, above all he explains the writing and performance of the operas themselves.
  • Provides a more accurate account of Bellini's personality and his relationships than has hitherto been available
  • Presents a clear, non-technical account of Bellini's mature operas
  • The first English-language account of the composer for twenty-five years


  • Introduction: rediscovering Bellini
  • 1 A young southerner
  • 2 Storming La Scala
  • 3 The champion
  • 4 At the height of his powers
  • 5 False steps
  • 6 Paris and death
  • Appendix
  • Notes
  • Index