Italian opera is both the art of opera in Italy and opera in the Italian language. Opera was born in Italy around the year 1600 and Italian opera has continued to play a dominant role in the history of the form until the present day. Many famous operas in Italian were written by foreign composers, including Handel and Mozart. Works by native Italian composers of the 19th and early 20th centuries, such as Rossini, Donizetti and Puccini, are amongst the most famous operas written and today are performed in opera houses across the world. Dafne by Jacopo Peri was the earliest composition considered opera. Peri's works, did not arise out of a creative vacuum in the area of sung drama. An underlying prerequisite for the creation of opera proper was the practice of monody. Monody is the solo singing/setting of a conceived melody, designed to express the emotional content of the text it carries, accompanied by a simple sequence of chords rather than other polyphonic parts. Italian composers began composing in this style late in the 16th century, it grew in part from the long-standing practise of performing polyphonic madrigals with one singer accompanied by an instrumental rendition of the other parts, as well as the rising popularity of more popular, more homophonic vocal genres such as the frottola and the villanella.
In these latter two genres, the increasing tendency was toward a more homophonic texture, with the top part featuring an elaborate, active melody, the lower ones a less active supporting structure. From this, it was only a small step to fully-fledged monody. All such works tended to set humanist poetry of a type that attempted to imitate Petrarch and his Trecento followers, another element of the period's tendency toward a desire for restoration of principles it associated with a mixed-up notion of antiquity; the solo madrigal, frottola and their kin featured prominently in the intermedio or intermezzo, theatrical spectacles with music that were funded in the last seventy years of the 16th century by the opulent and secular courts of Italy's city-states. Such spectacles were staged to commemorate significant state events: weddings, military victories, the like, alternated in performance with the acts of plays. Like the opera, an intermedio featured the aforementioned solo singing, but madrigals performed in their typical multi-voice texture, dancing accompanied by the present instrumentalists.
They were lavishly staged, led the scenography of the second half of the 16th century. The intermedi tended not to tell a story as such, although they did, but nearly always focused on some particular element of human emotion or experience, expressed through mythological allegory; the staging in 1600 of Peri's opera Euridice as part of the celebrations for a Medici wedding, the occasions for the most spectacular and internationally famous intermedi of the previous century, was a crucial development for the new form, putting it in the mainstream of lavish courtly entertainment. Another popular court entertainment at this time was the "madrigal comedy" also called "madrigal opera" by musicologists familiar with the genre; this consisted of a series of madrigals strung together to suggest a dramatic narrative, but not staged. There were two staged musical "pastoral"s, Il Satiro and La Disperazione di Fileno, both produced in 1590 and written by Emilio de' Cavalieri. Although these lost works seem only to have included arias, with no recitative, they were what Peri was referring to, in his preface to the published edition of his Euridice, when he wrote: "Signor Emilio del Cavalieri, before any other of whom I know, enabled us to hear our kind of music upon the stage".
Other pastoral plays had long included some musical numbers. The music of Dafne is now lost; the first opera for which music has survived was performed in 1600 at the wedding of Henry IV of France and Marie de Medici at the Pitti Palace in Florence. The opera, with a libretto by Rinuccini, set to music by Peri and Giulio Caccini, recounted the story of Orpheus and Eurydice; the style of singing favored by Peri and Caccini was a heightened form of natural speech, dramatic recitative supported by instrumental string music. Recitative thus preceded the development of arias, though it soon became the custom to include separate songs and instrumental interludes during periods when voices were silent. Both Dafne and Euridice included choruses commenting on the action at the end of each act in the manner of Greek tragedy; the theme of Orpheus, the demi-god of music, was understandably popular and attracted Claudio Monteverdi who wrote his first opera, La Favola d'Orfeo, in 1607 for the court of Mantua.
Monteverdi insisted on a strong relationship between music. When Orfeo was performed in Mantua, an orchestra of 38 instruments, numerous choruses and recitatives were used to make a lively drama, it was a far more ambitious version than those performed — more opulent, more varied in recitatives, more exotic in scenery — with stronger musical climaxes which allowed the full scope for the virtuosity of the singers. Opera had revealed its first stage of maturity in the hands of Monteverdi. L'Orfeo has the distinction of being the earliest surviving opera, still performed today. Within a few decades opera had spread throughout Italy. In Rome, it found an advocate in librettist Giulio Rospigliosi. Rospigliosi'
More Than a Miracle
More Than a Miracle is a 1967 film titled Cinderella Italian Style and Happily Ever After. It stars Omar Sharif and Dolores del Río; the movie has a fairy tale narrative. Filmed in the countryside outside Naples, Francesco Rosi directed and Carlo Ponti produced; the theme music was a hit for Roger Williams, reaching #2 on Billboard's survey. Sergio Franchi recorded the title song on his 1968 RCA Victor album, I'm a Fool To Want You; the film recounts the misadventures of a beautiful and temperamental Neapolitan village girl Isabella and an ill-tempered Spanish prince, Rodrigo. The prince was a risk taker. One day while riding a horse in the countryside, he becomes distracted by a noise and sees someone flying across the sky! This person predicts his future and gives him a donkey to take him in the right direction if he pats its back and feeds him flour. On the way back, he meets Isabella, he is much attracted to her, but she rejects him. The King of Spain orders Rodrigo to choose a wife among seven Italian Princesses within seven days, for that he arranges a gathering, despite his attraction to Isabella.
She joins the cooking team for the seven-day function, while the Prince searches for her in the countryside. With the help of witches and saints, Isabella conquers the heart of her Prince and marries him. List of American films of 1967 More Than a Miracle on IMDb Sophia Loren Official website Description at Turner Classic Movies Special Article at TCM Overview/summary of More than a Miracle at Turner Classic Movies Article from TCM Movie Database
Palermo is a city of Southern Italy, the capital of both the autonomous region of Sicily and the Metropolitan City of Palermo. The city is noted for its history, culture and gastronomy, playing an important role throughout much of its existence. Palermo is located in the northwest of the island of Sicily, right by the Gulf of Palermo in the Tyrrhenian Sea; the city was founded in 734 BC by the Phoenicians as Ziz. Palermo became a possession of Carthage. Two Greek colonies were established, known collectively as Panormos or "All-Port"; as Panormus, the town became part of Empire for over a thousand years. From 831 to 1072 the city was under Arab rule during the Emirate of Sicily when the city first became a capital; the Arabs shifted the Greek name into Bal ` the root for Palermo's present-day name. Following the Norman reconquest, Palermo became the capital of a new kingdom, the Kingdom of Sicily and the capital of the Holy Roman Empire under Emperor Frederick II and King Conrad IV; the population of Palermo urban area is estimated by Eurostat to be 855,285, while its metropolitan area is the fifth most populated in Italy with around 1.2 million people.
In the central area, the city has a population of around 676,000 people. The inhabitants are known as Palermitani or, panormiti; the languages spoken by its inhabitants are the Italian language and the Palermitano dialect of the Sicilian language. Palermo is Sicily's cultural and tourism capital, it is a city rich in history, art and food. Numerous tourists are attracted to the city for its good Mediterranean weather, its renowned gastronomy and restaurants, its Romanesque and Baroque churches and buildings, its nightlife and music. Palermo is the main Sicilian industrial and commercial center: the main industrial sectors include tourism, services and agriculture. Palermo has an international airport, a significant underground economy. In fact, for cultural and economic reasons, Palermo was one of the largest cities in the Mediterranean and is now among the top tourist destinations in both Italy and Europe, it is the main seat of the UNESCO World Heritage Site Arab-Norman Palermo and the Cathedral Churches of Cefalù and Monreale.
The city is going through careful redevelopment, preparing to become one of the major cities of the Euro-Mediterranean area. Roman Catholicism is important in Palermitano culture; the Patron Saint of Palermo is Santa Rosalia. The area attracts significant numbers of tourists each year and is known for its colourful fruit and fish markets at the heart of Palermo, known as Vucciria, Ballarò and Capo. Palermo lies in a basin, formed by the Papireto and Oreto rivers; the basin was named the Conca d'Oro by the Arabs in the 9th century. The city is surrounded by a mountain range, named after the city itself; these mountains face the Tyrrhenian Sea. Palermo is home to a natural port and offers excellent views to the sea from Monte Pellegrino. Palermo experiences a hot-summer subtropical Mediterranean climate, mild with moderate seasonality. Summers are long and dry due to the domination of subtropical high pressure system, while winters experience moderate temperatures and changeable, rainy weather due to the polar front.
Temperatures in autumn and spring are mild. Palermo is one of the warmest cities in Europe, with an average annual air temperature of 18.3 °C, it's one of the warmest cities in Italy. It receives 2,530 hours of sunshine per year. Snow is a rare occurrence having snowed about a dozen times since 1945. Since the 1940s to nowadays there have been at least five times when considerable snowfall has occurred. In 1949 and in 1956, when the minimum temperature went down to 0 °C, the city was blanketed by some centimetres of snow. Snowfalls occurred in 1981, 1986, 1999 and 2014; the average annual temperature of the sea is above 19 °C. In the period from November to May, the average sea temperature exceeds 18 °C and in the period from June to October, the average sea temperature exceeds 21 °C. Palermo is surrounded by mountains; some districts of the city are divided by the mountains themselves. It was difficult to reach the inner part of Sicily from the city because of the mounts; the tallest peak of the range is La Pizzuta, about 1,333 metres high.
However the most important mount is Monte Pellegrino, geographically separated from the rest of the range by a plain. The mount lies right in front of the Tyrrhenian Sea. Monte Pellegrino's cliff was described in the 19th century by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, as "the most beautiful promontory in the world", in his essay "Italian Journey". Today both the Kemonia are covered up by buildings. However, the shape of the former watercourses can still be recognised today, because the streets that were built on them follow their shapes. Today the only waterway not drained yet is the Oreto river that divides the downtown of the city from the western uptown and the industrial districts. In the basins there were, many seasonal torrents that helped formed swampy plains, reclaimed during history.
Fernando Cicero, better known as Nando Cicero, was an Italian film director and actor. Born in Asmara, Cicero debuted as an actor, working with directors such as Luchino Visconti, Roberto Rossellini, Francesco Rosi and Alberto Lattuada, he starred in eleven films between 1962, always in supporting roles. After his directorial debut with Lo scippo he directed three Spaghetti Western films. From 1970 he focused on comedy genre, directing some parody films starred by Franco Franchi and Ciccio Ingrassia. Starting with The School Teacher Cicero established himself as one of the most important and successful directors of the commedia sexy all'italiana film genre. Following the decline of the genre, he retired in 1983. Nando Cicero on IMDb
I magliari is a 1959 Italian drama film directed by Francesco Rosi. The film won the silver ribbon for best cinematography. In 2008 it was selected to enter the list of the 100 Italian films to be saved. Totonno is the leader of a gang of Italian workers; the group picks up rags and second hand cloths, marketing them to customers for sheer fabric with which to sew clothes. The work is dishonest, in fact the customers realize it soon; when Totonno and his gang flee to another city in Germany, the group encounters a band of Poles, who're doing the same dirty work. Alberto Sordi: Ferdinando Magliulo, detto Totonno Belinda Lee: Paula Mayer Renato Salvatori: Mario Balducci Nino Vingelli: Vincenzo Aldo Giuffré: Armando Aldo Bufi Landi: Rodolfo Valentino Josef Dahmen: Mr. Mayer The Magliari on IMDb
Michelangelo Antonioni, Cavaliere di Gran Croce OMRI, was an Italian film director, screenwriter and short story author. Best known for his "trilogy on modernity and its discontents" — L'Avventura, La Notte, L'Eclisse —as well as the English-language films Blowup and The Passenger, Antonioni produced "enigmatic and intricate mood pieces" that rejected action and plot in favor of contemplation and design. According to AllMovie, he "redefined the concept of narrative cinema" and challenged traditional approaches to storytelling and drama. Antonioni received numerous awards and nominations throughout his career, including the Cannes Film Festival Jury Prize, Palme d'Or, 35th Anniversary Prize, he is one of three directors to have won the Palme d'Or, the Golden Lion and the Golden Bear, the only director to have won these three and the Golden Leopard. Antonioni was born into a prosperous family of landowners in Ferrara, Emilia Romagna, in northern Italy, he was the son of Ismaele Antonioni. The director explained to Italian film critic Aldo Tassone: My childhood was a happy one.
My mother... was a warm and intelligent woman, a laborer in her youth. My father was a good man. Born into a working-class family, he succeeded in obtaining a comfortable position through evening courses and hard work. My parents gave me free rein to do what I wanted: with my brother, we spent most of our time playing outside with friends. Curiously enough, our friends were invariably proletarian, poor; the poor still existed at that time, you recognized them by their clothes. But in the way they wore their clothes, there was a fantasy, a frankness that made me prefer them to boys of bourgeois families. I always had sympathy for young women of working-class families later when I attended university: they were more authentic and spontaneous; as a child, Antonioni was fond of music. A precocious violinist, he gave his first concert at the age of nine. Although he abandoned the violin with the discovery of cinema in his teens, drawing would remain a lifelong passion. "I have never drawn as a child, either puppets or silhouettes but rather facades of houses and gates.
One of my favorite games consisted of organizing towns. Ignorant in architecture, I constructed streets crammed with little figures. I invented stories for them; these childhood happenings - I was eleven years old - were like little films."Upon graduation from the University of Bologna with a degree in economics, he started writing for the local Ferrara newspaper Il Corriere Padano in 1935 as a film journalist. In 1940, Antonioni moved to Rome, where he worked for Cinema, the official Fascist film magazine edited by Vittorio Mussolini. However, Antonioni was fired a few months afterward; that year he enrolled at the Centro Sperimentale di Cinematografia to study film technique, but left after three months. He was subsequently drafted into the army. During the war Antonioni survived being condemned to death as a member of the Italian resistance. In 1942, Antonioni co-wrote A Pilot Returns with Roberto Rossellini and worked as assistant director on Enrico Fulchignoni's I due Foscari. In 1943, he travelled to France to assist Marcel Carné on Les visiteurs du soir and began a series of short films with Gente del Po, a story of poor fishermen of the Po valley.
When Rome was liberated by the Allies, the film stock was transferred to the Fascist "Republic of Salò" and could not be recovered and edited until 1947. These films were neorealist in style, being semi-documentary studies of the lives of ordinary people. However, Antonioni's first full-length feature film Cronaca di un amore broke away from neorealism by depicting the middle classes, he continued to do so in a series of other films: I vinti, a trio of stories, each set in a different country, about juvenile delinquency. Il grido was a return to working class stories, depicting his daughter; each of these stories is about social alienation. In Le Amiche, Antonioni experimented with a radical new style: instead of a conventional narrative, he presented a series of disconnected events, he used long takes as part of his film making style. Antonioni returned to their use in L'avventura. At the Cannes Film Festival it received a mixture of cheers and boos, but the film was popular in art house cinemas around the world.
La notte, starring Jeanne Moreau and Marcello Mastroianni, L'Eclisse, starring Alain Delon, followed L'avventura. These three films are referred to as a trilogy because they are stylistically similar and all concerned with the alienation of man in the modern world. La notte won the Golden Bear award at the 11th Berlin International Film Festival, His first color film, Il deserto rosso, deals with similar themes, is sometimes considered the fourth film of the "trilogy". All of these films star his lover during that period. Antonioni signed a deal with producer Carlo Ponti that would allow artistic freedom on three films in English to be released by MGM
Italy the Italian Republic, is a country in Southern Europe. Located in the middle of the Mediterranean Sea, Italy shares open land borders with France, Austria and the enclaved microstates San Marino and Vatican City. Italy covers an area of 301,340 km2 and has a temperate seasonal and Mediterranean climate. With around 61 million inhabitants, it is the fourth-most populous EU member state and the most populous country in Southern Europe. Due to its central geographic location in Southern Europe and the Mediterranean, Italy has been home to a myriad of peoples and cultures. In addition to the various ancient peoples dispersed throughout modern-day Italy, the most famous of which being the Indo-European Italics who gave the peninsula its name, beginning from the classical era and Carthaginians founded colonies in insular Italy and Genoa, Greeks established settlements in the so-called Magna Graecia, while Etruscans and Celts inhabited central and northern Italy respectively; the Italic tribe known as the Latins formed the Roman Kingdom in the 8th century BC, which became a republic with a government of the Senate and the People.
The Roman Republic conquered and assimilated its neighbours on the peninsula, in some cases through the establishment of federations, the Republic expanded and conquered parts of Europe, North Africa and the Middle East. By the first century BC, the Roman Empire emerged as the dominant power in the Mediterranean Basin and became the leading cultural and religious centre of Western civilisation, inaugurating the Pax Romana, a period of more than 200 years during which Italy's technology, economy and literature flourished. Italy remained the metropole of the Roman Empire; the legacy of the Roman Empire endured its fall and can be observed in the global distribution of culture, governments and the Latin script. During the Early Middle Ages, Italy endured sociopolitical collapse and barbarian invasions, but by the 11th century, numerous rival city-states and maritime republics in the northern and central regions of Italy, rose to great prosperity through shipping and banking, laying the groundwork for modern capitalism.
These independent statelets served as Europe's main trading hubs with Asia and the Near East enjoying a greater degree of democracy than the larger feudal monarchies that were consolidating throughout Europe. The Renaissance began in Italy and spread to the rest of Europe, bringing a renewed interest in humanism, science and art. Italian culture flourished, producing famous scholars and polymaths such as Michelangelo, Leonardo da Vinci, Raphael and Machiavelli. During the Middle Ages, Italian explorers such as Marco Polo, Christopher Columbus, Amerigo Vespucci, John Cabot and Giovanni da Verrazzano discovered new routes to the Far East and the New World, helping to usher in the European Age of Discovery. Italy's commercial and political power waned with the opening of trade routes that bypassed the Mediterranean. Centuries of infighting between the Italian city-states, such as the Italian Wars of the 15th and 16th centuries, left the region fragmented, it was subsequently conquered and further divided by European powers such as France and Austria.
By the mid-19th century, rising Italian nationalism and calls for independence from foreign control led to a period of revolutionary political upheaval. After centuries of foreign domination and political division, Italy was entirely unified in 1871, establishing the Kingdom of Italy as a great power. From the late 19th century to the early 20th century, Italy industrialised, namely in the north, acquired a colonial empire, while the south remained impoverished and excluded from industrialisation, fuelling a large and influential diaspora. Despite being one of the main victors in World War I, Italy entered a period of economic crisis and social turmoil, leading to the rise of a fascist dictatorship in 1922. Participation in World War II on the Axis side ended in military defeat, economic destruction and the Italian Civil War. Following the liberation of Italy and the rise of the resistance, the country abolished the monarchy, reinstated democracy, enjoyed a prolonged economic boom and, despite periods of sociopolitical turmoil became a developed country.
Today, Italy is considered to be one of the world's most culturally and economically advanced countries, with the sixth-largest worldwide national wealth. Its advanced economy ranks eighth-largest in the world and third in the Eurozone by nominal GDP. Italy owns the third-largest central bank gold reserve, it has a high level of human development, it stands among the top countries for life expectancy. The country plays a prominent role in regional and global economic, military and diplomatic affairs. Italy is a founding and leading member of the European Union and a member of numerous international institutions, including the UN, NATO, the OECD, the OSCE, the WTO, the G7, the G20, the Union for the Mediterranean, the Council of Europe, Uniting for Consensus, the Schengen Area and many more; as a reflection