Adina (opera)

Adina is an operatic farsa in one act by Gioachino Rossini with a libretto by Marchese Gherardo Bevilacqua-Aldobrandini. The opera develops the popular theme of the “abduction from the seraglio“.[1][2] The première took place on 22 June 1826 at the Teatro Nacional de São Carlos, Lisbon.

Farsa by Gioachino Rossini

Rossini c. 1820
Librettist Gherardo Bevilacqua-Aldobrandini
Language Italian
Based on Theme of the abduction from the seraglio
22 June 1826 (1826-06-22)

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Adina was commissioned in 1818 by Diego Ignazio de Pina Manique, police superintendent of Lisbon and inspector of Portuguese theatres.[3] The opera was intended as a gift for a now unknown soprano who had apparently enthralled the superintendent with her performances at São Carlos.

The contract Rossini made was for a quick completion of the work, and the opera was finished in the same year it was commissioned. Rossini did not write an overture for the opera because none was specified in the contract and took little interest in the project.[3] The plot is very similar to that of Francesco Basili‘s 1819 opera, Il califfo e la schiava, for which the libretto was written by Felice Romani, and some passages occur in both librettos – a mystery which has not yet been unravelled.[3] Not all of the music is entirely original. According to the 2001 critical edition of the score by Fabrizio della Seta, “Rossini composed anew only four of the work’s nine numbers: the Introduction, the disarming Cavatina for Adina “Fragolette fortunate” (Lucky little strawberries), the Quartet, and the Finale; for three others he turned to the opera Sigismondo written in 1814; the remaining two were written by a collaborator.”[1]

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