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Vicente Martín y Soler

Vicente Martín y Soler

Vicente Martín y Soler's life

Vicente Martín y Soler was born in 1754 in Spain. Although relatively known nowadays, was very praised as a composer of opera buffa so to be called the Valencian Mozart.
He studied music in Bologna under Giovanni Battista Martini. His first opera Il tutore burlato dates 1775, to an Italian libretto adapted from Giovanni Paisiello's La frascatana, which in turn was based on a play of the same title by Filippo Livigni. It debuted in 1775 at the Teatro Real Coliseo in San Lorenzo de El Escorial, Madrid. In 1777, Martín y Soler travelled to Naples, where he composed for the Teatro di San Carlo. During the same period, he worked with Charles le Picq, a popular choreographer, to compose four ballets d’action: La Griselda (1779), from the libretto by Apostolo Zeno, I ratti sabini (1780), La bella Arsene (1781), and Tamas Kouli-Kan (1781), an interpretation of Vittorio Amedeo Cigna-Santi's libretto. He also worked with Zeno on an opera seria, Andromaca, in 1780 and composed two mezzocarattere ballets, La sposa persiana (1778) and Il barbiere di Siviglia (1781), based on the play by Beaumarchais). With court librettist Luigi Serio, he worked on the composition of opera seria, Ifigenia (1779) and Ipermestra (1780). He met great success with three operas composed to texts by Lorenzo Da Ponte in 1785 in Vienna. These three comedies were Una cosa rara (1786), Il burbero di buon cuore (1786) based on the play by Carlo Goldoni and L'arbore di Diana (1787).
He worked in Russia and London from 1788 to 1796. After returning to St Petersburg, he wrote his last opera, La festa del villaggio (1798). Martín y Soler died in 1806.

Martìn y Soler's Operas

Il tutore burlato (1775), Ifigenia in Aulide (1779), Ipermestra (1780), Andromaca (1780), Partenope (1782), L'amor geloso (1782), In amor ci vuol destrezza (1782), Vologeso (1783), Le burle per amore (1784), La vedova spiritosa (1785), Il burbero di buon cuore (1786), Una cosa rara ossia Bellezza ed onestà (1786), L'arbore di Diana (1787), Gorebogatïr' Kosometovich (1789), Pesnolyubiye (1790), Fedul' s det'mi (1791), La scuola dei maritati (1795), L'isola del piacere (1795), Le nozze de' contadini spagnuoli (1795), Camille ou Le souterrain (1796), La festa in villaggio (1798)


Martìn y Soler's Il Burbero di Buon Cuore

Il burbero di buon cuore is a playful drama in two acts by the composer Vicente Martìn y Soler, based on libretto by Lorenzo Da Ponte. Yes, him, the genious author of Mozart's Trilogy Nozze di figaro, Don Giovanni and Così fan tutte. It is based on one of the most famous play by Carlo Goldoni, Il burbero benefico. The opera was represented triumphantly for the first time on the 4th January 1786 at Burgtheater in Vienna. The libretto written by Da Ponte is well put together – it couldn't have been otherwise – with extremely high quality passages, such as the one when Ferramondo sings about the chess match where he's so sure to win Dorval or when Valerio pretends to be a fashionable salesman. Martìn y Soler's musical sheet, maybe his most famous one, offers graceful and colourful music, and an instrumental dynamics well built; it is undoubtedly a pleasant opera and it offers striking melodies which never fail to charm the public.
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