Tag Archives: Mefistofele

Ecco Il Mondo

‘Ecco il mondo’ is sung by Mefistofele in Act 2 Scene 2 of Boito’s opera. Last March I presented 11 recordings of basses singing the same character’s first act aria – ‘Son lo spirito che nega’. Below are 11 versions of ‘Ecco il mondo’. The words in Italian and an English translation are presented at…

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Recording of the Week: Mefistofele

Arrigo Boito (1842-1918) was a polymath without genius unlike Camille Saint-Saëns (1835-1921) who was equally (or even more) versatile, but who had genius. As a composer Boito’s reputation rests solely on his opera Mefistofele. It was premiered at La Scala in 1868 under the direction of the composer; he had very little experience as a conductor…

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Mefistofele – Photos by Robert Cahen

Boito’s Mefistofele which just finished its run at the San Francisco Opera is one of the oddest works in the standard operatic repertory even though its on its fringe. Its creator Arrigo Boito (1842-1918) was one of art’s great examples of the capacities and limitations of a man of talent, erudition, and skill who lacks…

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