I've decided to set myself a goal this year. I'm an avid opera-fan, but I've never done a good job at investigating the source material for the librettos of some of my favorite pieces. I want to change that. I decided to read 5 novels that were turned into operas I like.
So I started looking around for books upon which operas have been based. Turns out, most of the pieces I know come from source material are actually from mythology or plays. So I expanded, and now it's a big goal: 5 novels, 5 plays, and 5 mythological sources (plays or poems). I think it's a good project.
Here's what I'm looking at:
- Bride of the Lammermoors / Walter Scott (Lucia di Lammermoor / Donizetti)
- Lady Macbeth of the Mtsensk District / Nikolai Leskov (Lady Macbeth of the Mtsensk District / Shostakovich)
- Manon Lescaut / Abbé Prévost (Manon / Massenet)
- Eugene Onegin / Alexander Pushkin (Eugene Onegin / Tchaikovsky)
- Le Mariage de Loti / Pierre Loti (Lakmé / Delibes)
- Othello / William Shakespeare (Otello / Verdi)
- Les mamelles de Tirésias / Apollinaire (Les mamelles de Tirésias / Poulenc)
- Le Viol de Lucrèce / André Obey (The Rape of Lucretia / Britten)
- The Figaro Trilogy / Pierre Beaumarchais (The Barber of Seville / Rossini ; The Marriage of Figaro / Mozart ; La Mère Coupable / Milhaud ; The Ghosts of Versailles / Corigliano)
- The Merry Wives of Windsor / William Shakespeare (Falstaff / Verdi)
- Daphnis and Chloe / Longus (Daphnis et Chloé / Offenbach)
- Iphigenia in Tauris / Euripedes (Iphigénie en Tauride / Gluck)
- Oedipus Rex / Sophocles (Oedipus Rex / Stravinsky)
- Metamorphoses / Ovid (a ton of stuff)
- Electra / Sophocles (Elektra / Strauss)
Since this exploded, I'm not looking at an end date or anything.... but hopefully I'll make a big dent in it this year. And then I can make a new list! Whee.