A comprehensive and accessible introduction to the history, structure, and repertoire of the beloved art form
What is opera and how does it work? How has this dramatic form developed and what is its relevance in the modern world? Perfect for music students and operagoers, this introductory guide addresses these questions and many more, exploring opera as a complete and theatrical experience from the first operatic forms of Monteverdi and Cavalli through the 20th century.
Organized chronologically and accessibly written for the casual music lover, the book clearly demonstrates how opera reflected and reacted to changes in the world around it. Illustrative tables provide detailed easy-to-follow analy-ses of arias, scenes, and acts; visual guides to historical movements; and chronologies relating to genres and individual composers' works. With his-torical perspective and in-depth examination of the canon's most popular works, this book fosters an understanding of opera as a living form as it en-counters and incorporates material from an ever expanding repertoire in time, place, and culture.