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Pergolesi: La Serva Padrona, opening scene: December 30, 2011

Our new Noteworthy video – to welcome the New Year – is the opening scene from the innovative opera buffa (comic opera) La serva padrona (1733) by Giovanni Battista Pergolesi – whose 302nd birthday we celebrate on January 4. This opera was originally a short (45 minute) intermezzo between the acts of Pergolesi’s larger, opera seria (Il prigionier superbo). While the serious opera is now forgotten, La serva padrona enjoyed tremendous success, and is now seen as the bridge between Baroque and Classical opera – by virtue of its more realistic characters and focus on the escapades of everyday life. In this scene an elderly bachelor, Uberto, is angry at the delay in receiving his morning cup of hot chocolate – which he expects from his overly confident maidservant, Serpina, who he eventually marries; it features bass Donato di Stefano, along with La Petite Bande under Sigiswald Kuijken. Like Uberto, we too eagerly await the arrival of good things in this new year, not least of which is all the great music we can enjoy on Classical Archives. Happy New Year, and feel free to share with us your favorite videos!

Opening scene from Pergolesi’s comic opera La serva padrona

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