John Whenham

Claudio Monteverdi – Orfeo

Cambridge Opera Handbooks

Boek (softcover)

Item no.697570
Author/ComposerJohn Whenham
Scope232 pages; 14.1 × 21.6 cm
Release year1986
Publisher/ProducerCambridge University Press
Producer No.9780521284776
50.10 €
Delivery time approx. 1–2 weeks.
add to watch list


A detailed study of the earliest opera to have gained a foothold in the modern repertoire, the book begins with a historical section in which all the known evidence about the creation and early performances of Orfeo is drawn together and evaluated. The second section of the book includes a detailed history of the rediscovery of the opera; an influential essay by Joseph Kerman is reprinted here, together with a review by Romain Rolland of the first modern performance of Orfeo. The final section includes essays by a conductor and a producer who have staged notable performances of the opera in recent years. They explain their approaches to the work, and offer solutions to some of the problems it poses in performance.


  • Part I Text and Context:
  • 1 The Mantuan Orfeo Iain Fenlon
  • 2 The Orpheus myth and the libretto of Orfeo F W Sternfeld
  • 3 Orfeo, Act V: Alessandro Striggios's original ending John Whenham
  • 4 Five acts: one action John Whenham
  • Part II The Rediscovery of Orfeo:
  • 5 The rediscovery of Orfeo Nigel Fortune
  • 6 A review of vincent d'Indy's performance (Paris 1904) Romain Rolland
  • 7 Orpheus: the neoclassic vision Joseph Kerman
  • Part III Re-creating Orfeo for the Modern Stage:
  • 8 Solving the musical problems Jane Glover
  • 9 Telling the story David Freeman
  • Appendices