'Great Operas will serve its target audience well: the plot summaries are detailed and clear, text boxes give helpful background information about librettists, sources and historical references, and there are plenty of good anecdotes about composers and singers.' -- The Times Literary Supplement
With four famous operas each from Mozart, Verdi and Puccini, and two each from Rossini and Donizetti, there is a feast of information. Here are short guides to The Marriage of Figaro and Don Giovanni; to the splendour of Aïda, the heart-breaking La Traviata; the drama of Tosca. The range is very broad. There is Wagner’s great love story Tristan und Isolde; there is Johann Strauss’s light comedy Die Fledermaus. On the way you can be briefed about such favourites as Handel’s Giulio Cesare, Bizet’s Carmen, Gounod’s Faust, Tchaikovsky’s Eugene Onegin and Britten’s Peter Grimes.
With plot summaries, composer biographies, observations on musical points of interest and background on the historical and cultural context of each opera, every one of these guides will enhance your appreciation and enjoyment and help you discuss the work and the performance with your fellow opera-goers. Steen shares his expert knowledge with a lightness of touch that makes each guide a pleasure to read.
Witty, informative and beautifully presented, Great Operas is an indispensable reference guide for both seasoned opera-goers and those enjoying opera for the first time.