Giovanni's House

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20090131

Martin Handley explores the importance of the famous Italian music publishing firm Casa Ricordi. Throughout most of the 19th and 20th centuries, the history of Italian opera was directly tied to the fortunes of this single family publishing house, based in Milan.

The company was founded in 1808 by Giovanni Ricordi, a violinist who led the orchestra in a small Milanese theatre. From very small beginnings, the business grew rapidly and in 1814 he won the exclusive right to publish all the music performed at La Scala, where he was a prompter. Ten years later he purchased the venue's entire archive, and by 1835 Ricordi boasted a catalogue of 10,000 publications. These included most of the operas of Rossini, Bellini and Donizetti.

But the company's special relationship with Verdi and Puccini was especially significant. Giovanni's grandson Giulio persuaded Verdi to come out of retirement in 1880 and later played a vital role in Puccini's artistic career, publishing all his works. Casa Ricordi was also the first to come up with the 'royalty' concept and successfully lobbied for one of the first laws to protect composers' (and publishers') copyright. But was the firm always rigorous in its production standards?

The music includes many important operas from the 19th century, including Rossini, Bellini, Verdi and Puccini. Contributors include Simonetta Puccini, Ricordi family members, Ricordi managing director Tino Cenamo, former Ricordi director of publishing Gabrielle Dotto, music historian Philip Gossett and Verdi expert Cormac Newark.

Including:

Rossini: Barber of Seville

  • Enrico Caruso
  • Karlheinz Stockhausen (conductor)

    verdi: falstaff

  • ambrosian opera chorus, new philharmonia orchestra, riccardo muti (conductor)
  • asv cd dca 1140

    rossini: la pietra del paragone

  • cbs m2k 42535

    Martin Handley explores the importance of italian music publishing firm casa ricordi

  • cbs m2k 42535

    puccini: madam butterfly

  • chor der wiener staatsoper, wiener philharmoniker, Leonard Bernstein (conductor)
  • coro e orchestra del teatro all scala, claudio abbado (conductor)
  • czech chamber chorus, czech chamber soloists, brno, alessandro de marchi (conductor)
  • decca 411 635-2 & 636-2

    puccini: la boheme

  • decca 421 050-2 & 051-2

    puccini: turandot

  • decca 433 761-2

    donizetti: l'elisir d'amore

  • dg 413 448-2

    rossini: bianca e falliero

  • dg 423 380-2 to 383-2
  • dg 449 752-2

    verdi: othello

  • emi 5 56271 2

    liszt: preludio from 12 etudes d'execution transcendante

  • emi 5 56684 2

    verdi: nabucco

  • emi 5 65290 2

    verdi: simon boccanegra

  • emi 5 67128 2

    gounod: romeo et juliette

  • emi cdc 7 54868-70 2

    mehul: horatius cocles

  • emi cdc 747450/51 2

    verdi: falstaff

  • francois-rene duchable
  • london sinfonietta opera orchestra, donato renzetti (conductor)
  • maria callas (soprano)
  • mccd086

    stockhausen:donnerstag aus licht

  • naxos 8.660093-95

    bellini: norma

  • orchestra e coro del teatro alla scala, milano, claudio abbado (conductor)
  • orchestra e coro del teatro alla scala, milano, lorin maazel (conductor)
  • orchestra e coro del teatro alla scala, milano, riccardo chailly (conductor)
  • orchestra e coro del teatro alla scala, milano, riccardo muti (conductor)
  • orchestra e coro del teatro alla scala, milano, tullino serafin (conductor)
  • orchestra e coro dell'accademia di santa cecilia roma, alberto erede (conductor)
  • orchestra e coro dell'accademia di santa cecilia roma, tullio serafin (conductor)
  • orchestre de bretagne, stefan sanderling (conductor)
  • orchestre et choers du theatre national de l'opera de paris, alain lombard (conductor)
  • ricordi rfcd 2008

    verdi: macbeth

  • schoneberger sangerknaben, chor der deutschen oper berlin, berlin philharmonic, herbert von karajan (conductor)
  • sony s3k 37862/a-c

    verdi: don carlo

  • MF20090815

    Martin Handley explores the importance of the famous Italian music publishing firm Casa Ricordi.

    Throughout most of the 19th and 20th centuries, the history of Italian opera was directly tied to the fortunes of this single family publishing house, based in Milan.

    The company was founded in 1808 by Giovanni Ricordi, a violinist who led the orchestra in a small Milanese theatre.

    From very small beginnings, the business grew rapidly and in 1814 he won the exclusive right to publish all the music performed at La Scala, where he was a prompter.

    Ten years later he purchased the venue's entire archive, and by 1835 Ricordi boasted a catalogue of 10,000 publications.

    These included most of the operas of Rossini, Bellini and Donizetti.

    But the company's special relationship with Verdi and Puccini was especially significant.

    Giovanni's grandson Giulio persuaded Verdi to come out of retirement in 1880 and later played a vital role in Puccini's artistic career, publishing all his works.

    Casa Ricordi was also the first to come up with the 'royalty' concept and successfully lobbied for one of the first laws to protect composers' (and publishers') copyright.

    But was the firm always rigorous in its production standards?

    The music includes many important operas from the 19th century, including Rossini, Bellini, Verdi and Puccini.

    Contributors include Simonetta Puccini, Ricordi family members, Ricordi managing director Tino Cenamo, former Ricordi director of publishing Gabrielle Dotto, music historian Philip Gossett and Verdi expert Cormac Newark.

    Including:

    Rossini: Barber of Seville

    Orchestra e Coro del Teatro alla Scala, Milano, Riccardo Chailly (conductor)

    SONY S3K 37862/A-C

    Verdi: Don Carlo

    Orchestra e Coro del Teatro alla Scala, Milano, Riccardo Muti (conductor)

    EMI CDC 7 54868-70 2

    Mehul: Horatius Cocles

    Orchestre de Bretagne, Stefan Sanderling (conductor)

    ASV CD DCA 1140

    Rossini: La Pietra del Paragone

    Czech Chamber Chorus, Czech Chamber Soloists, Brno, Alessandro de Marchi (conductor)

    NAXOS 8.660093-95

    Bellini: Norma

    Maria Callas (soprano)

    Orchestra e Coro del Teatro alla Scala, Milano, Tullino Serafin (conductor)

    EMI 5 56271 2

    Liszt: Preludio from 12 Etudes D'Execution Transcendante

    Francois-Rene Duchable

    EMI 5 56684 2

    Verdi: Nabucco

    Orchestra e Coro del Teatro alla Scala, Milano, Claudio Abbado (conductor)

    DG 413 448-2

    Rossini: Bianca

    Katia Ricciarelli, soprano (Bianca)

    London Sinfonietta Opera Orchestra, Donato Renzetti (conductor)

    RICORDI RFCD 2008

    Verdi: Macbeth

    New Philharmonia Orchestra, Riccardo Muti (conductor)

    EMI 5 67128 2

    Gounod: Romeo et Juliette

    Mirella Freni, soprano (Juliette)

    Orchestre du Theatre National de l'Opera de Paris, Alain Lombard (conductor)

    EMI 5 65290 2

    Verdi: Simon Boccanegra

    Mirella Freni, soprano (Maria Boccanegra)

    Coro e Orchestra del Teatro all Scala, Claudio Abbado (conductor)

    DG 449 752-2

    Verdi: Othello

    Orchestra e Coro del Teatro alla Scala, Milano, Lorin Maazel (conductor)

    EMI CDC 747450/51 2

    Verdi: Falstaff

    Chor Der Wiener Staatsoper, Wiener Philharmoniker, Leonard Bernstein (conductor)

    CBS M2K 42535

    Puccini: Madam Butterfly

    Renata Tebaldi, soprano (Madama Butterfly); Carlo Bergonzi, tenor (B.F.

    Pinkerton)

    Orchestra dell'Accademia di Santa Cecilia Roma, Tullio Serafin (conductor)

    DECCA 411 635-2 & 636-2

    Puccini: La Boheme

    Mirella Freni, soprano (Mimi)

    Schoneberger Sangerknaben, Chor der Deutschen Oper Berlin, Berlin Philharmonic, Herbert von Karajan (conductor)

    DECCA 421 050-2 & 051-2

    Puccini: Turandot

    Mario del Monaco, tenor (Calaf)

    Orchestra e coro dell'Accademia di Santa Cecilia Roma, Alberto Erede (conductor)

    DECCA 433 761-2

    Donizetti: L'elisir d'amore

    Enrico Caruso

    MCCD086

    Stockhausen:Donnerstag Aus Licht

    DG 423 380-2 to 383-2

    Karlheinz Stockhausen (conductor)

    Renata Tebaldi, soprano (Madama Butterfly)

    Martin Handley explores the importance of Italian music publishing firm Casa Ricordi.