When first published in 1947, A Short History of Opera immediately achieved international status as a classic in the field. Now, more than five decades later, this thoroughly revised and expanded fourth edition informs and entertains opera lovers just as its predecessors have.
The fourth edition incorporates new scholarship that traces the most important developments in the evolution of musical drama. After surveying anticipations of the operatic form in the lyric theater of the Greeks, medieval dramatic music, and other forerunners, the book reveals the genre's beginnings in the seventeenth century and follows its progress to the present day.
A Short History of Opera examines not only the standard performance repertoire, but also works considered important for the genre's development. Its expanded scope investigates opera from Eastern European countries and Finland. The section on twentieth-century opera has been reorganized around national operatic traditions including a chapter devoted solely to opera in the United States, which incorporates material on the American musical and ties between classical opera and popular musical theater. A separate section on Chinese opera is also included.
With an extensive multilanguage bibliography, more than one hundred musical examples, and stage illustrations, this authoritative one-volume survey will be invaluable to students and serious opera buffs. New fans will also find it highly accessible and informative. Extremely thorough in its coverage, A Short History of Opera is now more than ever the book to turn to for anyone who wants to know about the history of this art form.
Whether it be Monteverdi or Gluck or Wagner, no saner guide than Grout can be recommended
Combines learning with a grace of expression seldom encountered in works of this kind. The subject is treated in greater detail than the word 'short'might indicate.
A Short History of Opera is perhaps one of the best known and most widely circulated texts on the history of this art form...This is a vitally important book, and it is likely to be one of the first places students, researchers, and fans will consult.
Preface to the Fourth EditionIntroductionPart I Music and Drama to the End of the Sixteenth Century The Lyric Theater of the GreeksMedieval Dramatic MusicThe Immediate Forerunners of OperaPart II The Seventeenth Century The Beginnings: Opera in Florence and MantuaOther Early Seventeenth-Century Italian Court Operas, Including the First Comic Operas in Florence and RomeItalian Opera in the Later Seventeenth Century in ItalySeventeenth-Century Italian Opera in German-Speaking LandsEarly German OperaOpera in France from Lully to CharpentierOpera in EnglandPart III The Eighteenth Century Masters of the Early Eighteenth CenturyOpera Seria: General CharacteristicsOpera Seria: The ComposersThe Operas of GluckThe Comic Opera of the Eighteenth CenturyThe Operas of Mozart and His Viennese ContemporariesPart IV The Nineteenth Century The Turn of the CenturyGrand OperaOpera Comique, Operetta, and Lyric OperaItalian Opera of the Primo Ottocento: Rossini, Donizetti, Verdi, and Their ContemporariesThe Romantic Opera in GermanyThe Operas of WagnerThe Later Nineteenth Century: France, Italy, Germany, and AustriaPart V Other National Traditions of Opera from the Seventeenth to the Early Twentieth Centuries National Traditions in Russia and Neighboring Countries; Central and Eastern Europe; Greece and Turkey; the Low Countries; Denmark, Scandinavia, and Finland; Spain, Portugal, and Latin America; the British Isles and the United StatesPart VI The Twentieth Century Introduction / Opera in France and ItalyOpera in the German-Speaking CountriesNational Traditions in Russia and Neighboring Countries; Central and Eastern Europe; Greece and Turkey; the Netherlands, Denmark, Sweden, and Finland; Spain, Portugal, and Latin AmericaOpera in the British Isles; Canada; Australia and New Zealand(r)MDBRØ (r)MDNMØOpera in the United StatesAppendix Chinese Opera