- Otello (Rossini)
However, the opera deviates heavily from Shakespeare's original, not only in that it takes place in Venice and not on Cyprus, but also in that the whole dramatic conflict develops in a different manner. The role of Iago is reduced to some degree, and it is much less diabolical than in the original or in Verdi's Otello of 1887.
Rossini's Otello is an important milestone in the development of opera as musical drama. It provided Giuseppe Verdi with a benchmark for his own adaptations of Shakespeare. A recent Opera Rara CD of the opera includes an alternative happy ending, a common practice with drama and opera at that period of the 19th Century.
The first performance took place at the Teatro del Fondo in Naples on 4 December 1816. It was given its UK premiere on 16 May 1822 at the King's Theatre in London and its American premiere at the Park Theatre in New York on 7 February 1826.
Role Voice type Premiere Cast, 4 December 1816
(Conductor: - )
Otello tenor Andrea Nozzari Desdemona mezzo-soprano Isabella Colbran Rodrigo tenor Giovanni David Jago tenor Giuseppe Ciccimarra Emilia mezzo-soprano Maria Manzi Elmiro bass Michele Benedetti The Doge of Venice tenor Gaetano Chizzola Lucio tenor Nicola Mollo A gondolier tenor Nicola Mollo
- Place: Venice
- Time: End of the 18th Century
Opera House and Orchestra
Label  1988 Chris Merritt,
Ezio Di Cesare,
Orchestra and Chorus of RAI Torino
(Video recording of a performance in the Rossini Opera Festival, Pesaro, August)
1999 Bruce Ford,
Juan José Lopera,
Philharmonia Orchestra and the Geoffrey Mitchell Choir
Audio CD: Opera Rara
Cat: ORC 18
2000 Bruce Ford,
Juan Diego Flórez
Orchestra and Chorus of the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden
(Recording of a performance in the Royal Opera House, February)
Audio CD: Premiere Opera Ltd.
Cat: CDNO 548-3;
House of Opera
- ^ Holden, p. 779
- ^ Recordings of Otello on operadis-opera-discography.org.uk
- Holden, Amanda (Ed.), The New Penguin Opera Guide, New York: Penguin Putnam, 2001. ISBN 0-140-29312-4
- Osborne, Charles, The Bel Canto Operas of Rossini, Donizetti, and Bellini, Portland, Oregon: Amadeus Press, 1994 ISBN 0931340713
- Osborne, Richard, ‘’Rossini’’, Ithaca, New York: Northeastern University Press, 1990 ISBN 1555530885 ISBN 1-55553-088-5
- Othello: a tragic opera in two acts, as performed at the New York Theatre by Francesco Maria Berio, Gioacchino Rossini, Francesco Berio di Salsa, William Shakespeare; Contributors: Edward M Murden, Daniel Fanshaw; (published by E.M. Murden, no. 4 Chambers-Street, for the New-York Theatre. D. Fanshaw, printer., 1826)
- Othello: a tragic opera in two acts as performed by the Garcia Troupe in New York in 1826, and the Italian Company of the Chestnut Street Theatre in 1833 by Gioacchino Rossini, Francesco Berio di Salsa, Francesco Maria Berio, William Shakespeare (published by Neal, 1833)
William Shakespeare's Othello Characters Source
- "Un Capitano Moro" from Gli Hecatommithi (1565) by Giovanni Battista Giraldi
Screen adaptations Stage adaptations
- Catch My Soul (US) (1969)
- Catch My Soul (UK) (1970)
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