Music: Perennial

For at least a generation modernistic esthetes and masterminds have been prophesying a speedy decline for the sentimental operas of the late Giacomo Puccini. Sensible critics,*however, have often pointed out that, though they may be bathetic, Puccini's operas are masterpieces of musical stagecraft, shaped by one of the surest hands that ever penned an aria. Meanwhile Tosca, La Boheme, and Madame Butterfly have been played incessantly wherever opera is given. During his lifetime, Composer Puccini made a fortune from them—a rare feat for a composer of serious music—and today they are still tops...

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