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The Gilded Stage: A Social History of Opera

4.21 of 5 stars 4.21  ·  rating details  ·  28 ratings  ·  8 reviews
From Opera's beginnings in the courts of northern Italy to its spread across Europe and the world, The Gilded Stage is an operatic Grand Tour of opera houses, monarchs, artists, and audiences. An exceptionally elegant volume, "The Gilded Stage" is a must-have for every music lover.
Hardcover, 482 pages
Published January 1st 2010 by Atlantic Books (UK)
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Community Reviews

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Jessica  Gwen
I am writing a book about an opera singer, and read this book as part of my research. I never thought that a book about the "social history of opera" would be a page-turner, so I was very pleasantly surprised. The author brings history to life with his colorful and erudite descriptions of opera prima donnas, temperamental composers, and early performances in fire-prone opera houses. Not only was this book helpful and informative, but it was a pleasure to read as well.
Oz Ortega
Éste es sin duda el libro sobre ópera más interesante que he leído, ya que como el mismo autor menciona desde el comienzo,no se trata de una extensa lista de obras,autores y sinopsis sino de como la ópera se ha desarrollado como un acontencimiento social. El modo en que está escrito es muy ameno y aún cuando maneja numerosos datos consigue ser ligero y no fatigar. Hay capítulos sumamente interesantes,como aquellos que se refiere a la ópera durante las Guerras Mundiales, las novedosas puestas en ...more
Robert Costic
Whether you find this book interesting will depend, I think, on how much you knew about opera before you picked it up. The beginnings of opera from a kind of club of the aristocracy and its transformation into a middle class temple of art wasn't new to me. What was new - and tedious to me personally - was the blow by blow accounts of various opera houses - who founded them, who ran them, what they preformed when and where, when they had financial problems, and so on. It also tends to give pedest ...more
Alex
Un libro muy interesante y muy diferente a otros libros sobre ópera que he leído. En primer, resalta que el libro no está escrito a manera de "enciclopedia" con entradas específicas sobre óperas, compositores, cantantes, etc. En cambio, está estructurado a partir de capítulos temáticos que tratan de distintas épocas, lugares y sucesos en los que la ópera ha jugado un importante papel en la vida social, política, económica o cultural de un pueblo, un país o el mundo entero.

El libro está lleno de
...more
Denise
Yes, this book took me 4 months and 1 day to read. Yes, the print is very small and there are over 400 pages of solid information, not a lot of pictures. Yes, this book is a commitment that might make the guy who read the OED look casual.

However, it's actually very readable. The writing is academic, and there are lots of Big Words, but the prose is stylish, quick, and elegant, so that it really doesn't feel like you're reading a musicology textbook.

This book also answered a lot of big question
...more
Schopflin
Highly readable and full of entertaining detail. The only weakness in my opinion were the speculative ponderings at the end. Hard to do well and perhaps best omitted. Oh. Also. Big thick books like this when softbound are an utter pain to read - too heavy to take on the bus and hard to wrangle at home.
James
Even though i am surprised that the authour's first name is not Frosty, he has done a wonderful job detailing the history of opera as we know it. Also incredibly enlightening to see some poignant social moments in history that more brought to the forefront with Opera, and refreshing to know that this form is not dead in any way.
Silene Chou
Feb 09, 2013 Silene Chou is currently reading it
Shelves: music
Bel libro, si racconta proprio una storia 'sociale' del teatro: sociale vuol dire che è collegato con vari elementi: la politica, il gusto del pubblico, il manager e la gestione, ecc., oltre alla musica e il libretto se stessi...la parte sui drammi per musica del Seicento e Settecento è molto interessante.
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