Opera: Orfeo Resurrected

Franz Joseph Haydn was busily conducting the first rehearsal of his opera, Orfeo ed Euridice, when into the new King's Theater walked the royal bailiffs with an order prohibiting the performance. King George III had decided that the London of 1791 was big enough for only one Italian opera company—his own at the rival Pantheon.

That abortive first rehearsal was as close as Haydn ever got to seeing a performance of Orfeo. Not until 1951, in fact, did the opera receive its first staged performance, when it was presented at Florence's Maggio...

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