Cantatas: De Morte et Conscientia

To Gian Carlo Menotti, death is the moment of the enlightenment that makes life worthwhile. In Labyrinth, his last television opera, he dwelt on the idea to the point of moral vertigo. If life is a grand hotel, he seemed to be saying, then death is its night clerk. Those who want keys to their rooms must die to get them.

Now, in a new dramatic cantata called The Death of the Bishop of Brindisi, Menotti makes the same point with fresh power and beauty. In its premiere in Cincinnati's Music Hall, his music won him an ovation greater than any...

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