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Pergolesi - Livietta e Tracollo

1 customer review

Additional DVD options Edition Discs
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(May 31, 2011)
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Editorial Reviews

The Intermezzi (interludes) presented here were premiered in combination with Giovanni Battista Pergolesi's opera Adriano in Siria on the occasion of the festivities for the birthday of Queen Elizabeth of Spain in 1734 at the Teatro San Bartolo in Naples. As was customary, the first intermezzo was given after the first act and the second intermezzo after the second act of the opera. The intermezzi had no connection with the plot of the opera seria, nor did the same singers perform.

Part I
Dressed as a French peasant boy, Livietta, with her friend Fluvia, plans to lure Tracollo into a trap and punish him because he has robbed Livietta's brother and almost killed him. As Tracollo and his servant Faccenda, disguised as a pregnant Polish woman and a beggar, approach the women, Livietta pretends to be just waking up. She catches Tracollo trying to steal Fulvia s jewelry. Livietta reveals herself and is determined to have Tracollo arrested, whereupon he pleads for mercy. He attempts to calm Livietta down and promises to marry her. Although this is Livietta's greatest wish, she turns him down.

Part II
Tracollo has disguised himself as an astrologer and pretends to be deranged in order to soften Livietta's heart after all. To test his supposed unsoundness of mind, Livietta acts the part of one who will soon die. Tracollo proves to be very concerned at this new set of circumstances; he stirs Livietta in such a way, that she leaves off all deception. Both swear to marry, swear eternal love and faithfulness.

'Livietta and Tracollo' counts among the most popular intermezzi of the 18th century and was performed on numerous Italian stages and in other European countries for over 20 years. The production of the Intermezzo, adapted in 1963 by Wolf Ebermann and Manfred Koerth, formed the basis for the performances at the Chamber Opera Vienna (1975), the Schwetzinger Festival (1978) and at the Berlin Chamber Opera (1985).

Special Features


Product Details

  • Actors: Nancy Argenta
  • Directors: Donato di Stefano
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Classical, Color, NTSC, Widescreen
  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.78:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: Kultur Video
  • DVD Release Date: May 31, 2011
  • Run Time: 42 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • ASIN: B004QR734Y
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #202,002 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Gio on August 22, 2011
Verified Purchase
... a miniature Rossini opera buffa, composed 58 years before Rossini was born! Or, if you will, the 'Papageno/Papagena' portions of Mozart's Magic Flute, excerpted for YouTube. Yes, the precocious Giovanni Battista Pergolesi (1710-1736) was the progenitor of the Italian comic opera, which was in turn the inheritor of Commedia dell'Arte styles and stories dating back to antiquity. 'Verismo' may come and go, but Slapstick is eternal!

"Livietta e Tracollo" isn't a full opera. It's an intermezzo, originally performed in Naples in 1734 between the acts of Pergolesi's opera seria "Adriano in Siria". It may remind Shakespeare scholars of the comic "jigges" performed by Will Kemp and others between the acts of Hamlet, King Lear, and other tragedies. It could well be a tale from Bocaccio or Chaucer. There are only two singers, a woman disguised as a male peasant and a man dressed ludicrously as a pregnant beggar from Poland. In the first act, the woman Livietta apprehends and strips the disguise of the rascally thief Tracollo and threatens to send him to court. Tracollo begs for mercy and offers to marry Livietta, but she is thirsty for vengeance. In the second act -- the two acts were probably not performed consecutively -- Tracollo reappears disguised as an astrologer; Livietta feigns illness, Tracollo reveals his true love, and the two become engaged. Livietta is sung in this performance by soprano Nancy Argenta, while Tracollo is basso Werner van Mechelen. The absurdly disjunct voices of a soprano in man's garb and a basso in woman's attire spark the recitativo comedy. But the funniest moments come in the arias, which are indeed 'prophetic' of the whackiest Rossini mayhem scenes.

The orchestra is La Petite Bande, conducted by Sigiswald Kuijken.
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