Talk:Giacomo Puccini

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Art an illness quote[edit]

I recently found a quote attributed to Puccini : "Art is a kind of illness". I am curious as to what might have prompted such a statement?

Puccini suffered from a kind of frenetic creative impulse. Similiar to a drug adict, long before the finishing of an opera he suffered a strong anxsiousness about what to do next, as if without creating, he was not existing.--FaZ72 22:43, 21 September 2005 (UTC)

Many artists have this. Puccini? He didn't write so many operas, and stopped working for long periods. But when he was composing, yes, this is true: it was a kind of fever. -- Al pereira 17:25, 7 February 2006 (UTC)

Turandot: the Final[edit]

Why this particular matter is talked here? The existence of different endings is an interesting info regarding the Turandot article, but they haven't actually to do with Puccini's biography. I suggest to delete these info or to move some of them to Turandot --Al pereira 03:34, 14 February 2006 (UTC)

OK, i will address the isue when i have time. The point was that the last part of the article, as it was before was confusing. So you think that even the short mention to Berios final should be left out?

No, a short mention can be left. Thanks. --Al pereira 02:47, 15 February 2006 (UTC)

A note from someone else: this article is not in accord with the Turandot article, factually, and contains too much opinion (that Alfano's ending is "poor" - that's a value judgment on the part of the author, not something that can be factually supported - all that can be said is that Maguire felt that way, if she did). I'm not going to mess with it, but someone should consider ironing out the differences between the two articles. The Turandot article has a different account of Toscanini's words, and more support for its version, as well.

I didn’t write that Alfano's version is pour, but that he's attempts to interpret the sketches were pour, which is an objective fact. Anyway I have moved the information (in a hopefully more clear way) in the Turandot topic.
Toscanini's words in the current article are from an academic source: ‘Turandot and Its Posthumous Prima’ by William Ashbrook (in Opera Quarterly 2/1984, 126-131) who cites directly ‘Carteggi pucciniani’ of Euginio Gara (Milan: Ricordi, 1958: p563) with the following footnote:
'Thus does Gara remember Toscanini's words, which he was present to hear for he adds the detail that the conductor's voice "was hoarser than usual." What he said was: "The opera ends here because at this point the Maestro died."’ ('Qui finisce l'opera, perché a questo punti il maestro è morto' in the text on page 127)
i found this citation on http://www.puccini.it/scientifica/epistolaren.htm that may help to explain futher:
'Biographies in particular indulge in the anecdotal, and the many collections of letters, beginning with the Epistolario edited by Giuseppe Adami (1928, rpt. 1982) and the Carteggi pucciniani edited by Eugenio Gara (1958), do not follow philological criteria for critical editions and offer conflicting information in their annotations, not to mention numerous errors. '
I suggest to use my sources, since they are of 1958, 16 years before the citation on the Turandot article.--FaZ72 08:28, 1 March 2006 (UTC)

Tears of Toscanini[edit]

I have rewriten the sentence of Toscanini at Turandot's premiere, from a personal translation of the known italian source. I have removed the tears, since in none of the different reports i read they are mentioned, so i consider it likely a myth. I am reading a lot, since i am writing an essay about different finals of the opera in this days.

Vandalism?[edit]

At the bottom of the article it states "As many know, Giacomo is believed to have been reborn in Concord, MA as Alexander Nordeen. Alexander proves this through his excellent ramshacking qualities and ability to lead. He is a great prospect." I can only presume this is some tosser goofing around.

Why, yes, yes it was. Looks like it's been removed now; you can also see how to do this yourself. Cheers, Mindspillage (spill yours?) 12:50, 4 May 2006 (UTC)

Wikipedia policy[edit]

It is wikipedia policy to name things by the name which they are most commonly named. Someone has (correctly) insisted that the "Messa di Gloria" is (technically) named "Messa", but while this is technically correct, everyone in the music biz knows it as "Messa di Gloria". It might be someone's "fault", but tough titties. That's what's it's known as, by 99.99% of musicians, and pedantically insisting that it's *NOT* known as such is against wikipedia policy. Revolver 02:46, 9 May 2006 (UTC)

[1]. If popular CDs, programme notes, and academic works refer to it as "di Gloria", I think that makes it the most popular name. Sorry, I know it's "wrong". Revolver 02:53, 9 May 2006 (UTC)
Okay, I gave a detailed rational, citing wikipedia policy, and you revert without any comment. I'm taking to RfC. Ridiculous. Revolver 03:14, 9 May 2006 (UTC)

If somebody writes the article about Puccini's Messa, you can make a redirect from Messa di Gloria, but the first aim of the article Giacomo Puccini is to give correct info about Giacomo Puccini and his works, and to rectify the wrong ones. Obviously, the article can include a note about the wrong but more popular title of "Messa di Gloria". Thanks. --Al pereira 03:19, 9 May 2006 (UTC)

My comment is here, just be patient... --Al pereira 03:21, 9 May 2006 (UTC)

Fine, my point is, if (and most likely when, I could do it in 2 seconds), an actual article is made on the Messa di Gloria, then such a decision on the actual title will have to be made. Contrary to your opinion, giving the most common name first and making it VERY clear that the name is a historical accident which is technically incorrect is not "giving wrong information". And Wikipedia policy is clear that the title of such a future article should be Messa di Gloria, not Messa. It's plain English. By your reasoning, it would be incorrect to name the article on dogs "dog" instead of "Canis lupus familiaris", because the latter is the 100% precise name. Unless you deny that "di Gloria" is the most commonly used name? And you can support this? Revolver 03:32, 9 May 2006 (UTC)
I see you're Italian. Maybe this is a language thing, and maybe Messa di Gloria is not common in Italian. If that's the case, your POV is easier to understand. But still, realise this is English, not Italian wikipedia. Revolver 03:34, 9 May 2006 (UTC)
See Wikipedia:Naming_conventions_(common_names)#Examples. Revolver 03:36, 9 May 2006 (UTC)
A "Dog" is indeed a "Canis lupus familiaris", but a "Messa di gloria" is a particolar type of "Messa", not all the "messe" are "di gloria", like not all the "messe" are "di requiem". Calling "Messa di Gloria" Puccini's "Messa" is like calling "poodle" a dog of a different "race". --Al pereira 03:43, 9 May 2006 (UTC)
The wrong title comes just from Italy. --Al pereira 03:43, 9 May 2006 (UTC)
I don't know what you're trying to say. The "wrong title" is common in the US, so it doesn't come "just from Italy". Otherwise, we wouldn't be having this disagreement. Revolver 04:04, 9 May 2006 (UTC)
"just" = "only", is the meaning I read above. Revolver 04:04, 9 May 2006 (UTC)

It was Italian publisher Ricordi who printed a piano-vocal score as "Messa di Gloria", together with a full score correctly entitled "Messa". --Al pereira 10:19, 9 May 2006 (UTC)


"It is today's most popular opera."- I have changed it back to "It is arguably today's most popular opera" because there are no hard facts about popularity of operas- it is sheerly based on general consent, so I think 'arguably' would have to be there.--Doublea 21:01, 3 July 2006 (UTC)


Adaptations[edit]

I don't know if it'd be considered blasphemous, but it might be important to note some of the adaptations of Puccini's works in modern culture. Off the top of my head, there's the musical Rent, and that Kevin Spacey movie...The Life and Times of David Gale or something.

Subjective details[edit]

The section of this article labelled 'style' troubles me a little. While I don't think orchestration per se can ever be said to 'characterize' anything, the article doesn't currently even suggest how 'the orchestra at the end of Madama Butterfly reflects the tragedy of Cio-Cio-San's love'. And as for 'one can feel the sun rising'... I think it's pretty clear that any such feeling is the result of the context, and nothing to do with some innate expressive quality in P.'s 'style'. I'm going to make some changes to try and make this a little more scientific. Ajcounter 17:07, 28 August 2006 (UTC)

Actually, I don't know where to start. It seems to me that the entire first paragraph of this section needs to be deleted. Has P.'s style been avoided by musicologists? Is this because of its complexity? Who precisely considers him to be one of the greatest orchestrators in opera? What is 'heavily integrated' orchestration? There's basically not a single comment here which is encyclopedic... However, deleting that much material is a massive edit which I'm not prepared to make without some discussion. Anyone any suggestions for a middle course? Ajcounter 17:14, 28 August 2006 (UTC)
Thank goodness someone's actually taking notice of this page. I suggest just a rewrite of the section (which didn't exist until a few months ago). Of course, some of the things mentioned in the current form (Ex. Wagnerian influence in orchestration, liefmotifs, melodic style, etc.) should be retained. Doublea 04:35, 15 November 2006 (UTC)
I've just edited the "Style" section; it's not been gutted, but I've cut quite a lot. I've done this more as a musician than a Puccini-fan, so if anyone wants to check the history and progressively reintegrate more cogent versions of the specific refs to the works which I've removed due to their un-scientific character, please feel free! Ajcounter 22:11, 19 November 2006 (UTC)

His death marked the end of opera as a popular art form[edit]

Although some of the referenced sources hint at this, I think this dramatic claim needs a specific citation and a detailed explanation. Is it true? What does it mean? Why did it happen? -- Meyer 09:39, 25 September 2006 (UTC)

It's true, from my subjective experience, that the standard opera repetoire ends with the death of Puccini. (There are a few exceptions, e.g. some of Britten's operas, but the point remains largely true). Since then, modern classical music has embraced dissidence and atonality, which have never won the hearts of ordinary opera and concert goers. As classical music has moved away from melody, the market for new classical music has constantly decreased in size, its place taken by pop. Can anyone suggest an operatic aria, or any piece of classical music, that are large number of non-specialists could hum which was compsed after "Nessun dorma" (which was some time in the 1920s)? Puccini was also the last of the old style opera composers in that he was a central cultural figure and icon for his country, in a way that no classical composer can be nowadays.

Any piece of classical music? Copland's Rodeo immediately comes to mind. Heck, the American Beef Board used "Hoe-Down" in their ads for years. In much the same way The William Tell Overture is linked to the Lone Ranger, you hum two bars of that to the average American and they'll say "Beef, it's what's for dinner.". Granted, it's based on older folk music, but I think more people these days know the Copland composition over the source material. "Fanfare for the Common Man" is also pretty widely known. Both of these works are nearly two decades newer than Turandot. RandyKaelber (talk) 08:49, 1 May 2008 (UTC)
The first pages of the Ashcroft/Powers book (Puccini's Turandot:The End of the Great Tradition) (see main article references), begin by quoting the final page of The Golden Century of Italian Opera by William Weaver as saying ' The opera ends here.. Toscanini might have been speaking not just of P's last work but of Italian opera in general'. etc. etc (They then go on to explain & qualify that opinion, but the damage is done :-))

Bob aka Linuxlad (talk) 20:52, 5 May 2008 (UTC)

I'm not challenging the opera assertion above or in the main article, just the "any classical piece" assertion of the the comment above. I'm probably more aware of classical music than the typical American, but I'm by no means a specialist, and I'm far more familiar with either of those Copland pieces than I am of "Nessum Dorma", which I sometimes don't even recognize for a while upon first hearing it. In fairness, I don't care for most opera, so I may be biased. ;-) RandyKaelber (talk) 19:40, 9 July 2008 (UTC)

State of the article[edit]

I believe this article needs a serious re-write, less for substance than for style and usage. There are many poorly-constructed sentences and typos, and the feel is that of an article translated from Italian (I imagine) into English. When I can I will tidy it up but feel free to beat me to it! --Wspencer11 (talk to me...) 14:50, 3 November 2006 (UTC)

You are right; it certainly needs work. I'll work on it too. Vivaverdi 16:33, 3 November 2006 (UTC)
Here we are five years later — How does it look to you now? Charles Edwin Shipp (talk) 11:35, 18 December 2011 (UTC)

Puccini in movies[edit]

I think it might be interesting to add a section on the use of Puccini's music in movies. One list can be found at this adress.

Let's Go To Prison (2006) by Bob Odenkirk - Turandot: Nessun dorma

Rocky Balboa (2006) by Sylvester Stallone - Gianni schicchi: O mio babbino caro

Chasing Liberty (2004) by Andy Cadiff - Turandot: Nessun dorma

Under the Tuscan Sun (2003) - Madama Butterfly: Humming Chorus

The life of David Gale (2003) by Alan Parker - Turandot: Tu che di gel sei centa

Bend It Like Beckham (2003) - Music ("Nessun Dorma")

40 Days and 40 Nights (2002) - Tosca: Recondita Armonia

Death to Smoochy (2002) - Tosca: Vissi D'Arte"

Very Annie Mary (2002) - Turandot: Nessun Dorma - Gianni Schicchi: O mio babbino caro

The Kid Stays in the Picture (2002) - Tosca: Vissi d'arte

Captain Corelli's Mandolin (2001) - Gianni Schicchi: O mio Babbino Caro

Pavilion of Women (2001) - Madama Butterfly: Un Bel Di Vedremo

Recess: School's Out (2001) - Turandot: Nessun Dorma

etc... etc...

For the moment I am going to add it as an external link.

I think it's also interesting to note his appearance in the third chapter of the Young Indiana Jones Chronicles DVD release (The Perils of Cupid - Florence, May 1908) with Georges Corraface playing the part (very picture like if I may say so myself) or as they were released on television in the second season episode 23. More information here: www.tv.com Athinsz (talk) 18:45, 18 December 2009 (UTC)

Infobox[edit]

Giacomo Puccini
GiacomoPuccini.jpg
Background information
Birth nameGiacomo Antonio Domenico Michele Secondo Maria Puccini
GenresRomantic
Occupation(s)Composer

In view of the strong consensus which has emerged aganst using popular music infoboxes for composers I am moving the box here while retaining the photo on the article page. Any comments. BTW I don't think many people would regard Puccini as a Romantic Composer. - Kleinzach 05:03, 19 April 2007 (UTC)

Unfortunately this box has just been put back on the article without any explanantion or comment here. I am reverting and suggest we discuss it here. --Kleinzach 11:10, 22 April 2007 (UTC)
It doesn't have to be discussed. Until a new infobox for composers is created this one will have to do.
NewYork1956 11:48, 22 April 2007 (UTC)
In view of the Three-revert rule, the prohibition against edit wars and the fact that NewYork1956 has just reverted for the fourth time, I am not going to make any changes to the article until other people have expressed opinions. NewYork1956 refuses to discuss the infobox, however I'd like to suggest to other editors that (1) the Italian flag is anachronistic re Puccini's birth as it preceded the Risorgimento, and (2) Puccini was not a Romantic composer (actually 'Romantic' is not a genre anyway). The genre he developed is called verismo. The reason why all members of the Opera Project and the Composers Project are unanimously against using these infoboxes is that they were designed for pop music. They are simplistic and misleading when used for major composers . --Kleinzach 23:56, 22 April 2007 (UTC)
Then change it yourself, don't remove the whole box. You seem to be the only person with a problem with the way it is currently set up on this article and until a new infobox for composers is created this one is just fine.
NewYork1956 02:43, 23 April 2007 (UTC)
Just a note, from Italy: neither romantic nor "verista". Actually, one cannot call "verista" neither Mascagni or Leoncavallo, since the most part of Mascagni operas are not at all "veriste" and the very Leoncavallo wrote many operettas! Nowadays, a link between Puccini and opera verista can be (partly) seen only as regards Tosca and Il tabarro. Maybe an opera can be said "romantic" or "verista" but, like you write, it would be very "simplistic and misleading" to put a composer in one of these categories. Surely not Puccini. So, first at all, I suggest to delete that info. --Al Pereira(talk) 02:48, 23 April 2007 (UTC)
The infobox should be removed per the centralised discussion. It only encourages users to add simplistic or outright inaccurate information. --Folantin 08:00, 23 April 2007 (UTC)
As there is no support for retaining the infobox I am removing it. I hope this will be respected and there will be no further revertions. Thank you. --Kleinzach 00:13, 25 April 2007 (UTC)
I agree in removing it, as noted in the centralized discussion on the Composers project. Infoboxes for composers oversimplify, and jam people into "genres" that range from the misleading to the meaningless. Cheers, Antandrus (talk) 00:44, 25 April 2007 (UTC)
I agree too --Al Pereira(talk) 01:06, 25 April 2007 (UTC)
i find the attitudes regarding the infoboxes and composer quite odd. keeping in mind that not everyone who visits these pages are as familiar with the classical genre as some of the editors and patrollers of the composer articles. what infoboxes do is impart information quickly to those who may not be inclined or have the time to plunge into the depths of music theory to find something interesting. these composers are not deities and gods...just men with a truck-load of talent. let's not forget that wikipaedia is not for the learned...for those seeking information, and all this stilting and deifying serves only to is exclude the very people we should be woeing. --emerson7 | Talk 02:43, 25 April 2007 (UTC)
Please feel free to join the discussion on the Composers Project. We are using infoboxes for certain types of information/navigation, so we are not against them per se. What we are strongly opposed to is wrong information. IMO something that is badly designed will never produce a good result. If we were writing a children's encyclopedia, there might be a virtue in (intelligent) simplification, but we are not. Also I don't see why music articles should be pitched at a lowest-common-denominator level if scientific articles are not. In order to make the articles as accessible as possible, we need to concentrate on the clarity of the text (which is always open to constructive criticism) not misinformation via these little boxes. --Kleinzach 03:11, 25 April 2007 (UTC)

We have now had a cooling off perod of two days. Four editors have asked for the infobox to be removed and only two want to keep it, so I am now removing it from the article page. I hope the majority view will be respected. That's the way WP works - we are democratic, we vote. --Kleinzach 02:37, 27 April 2007 (UTC)

there has been no concensus declared...the controvery rages on here ...and all posts previously posted here were referred there. ...and even if wp was a democracy, six hardly qualifies as a quorum --emerson7 | Talk 03:33, 27 April 2007 (UTC)
Hmm. I see you have again replaced the infobox. What is your definition of a consensus? That everyone agrees with you? Since when did we need a quorum? Are the editors here not entitled to make decisions about this article? --Kleinzach 04:08, 27 April 2007 (UTC)
What Kleinzach said. Also see WP:OWN. --Folantin 07:03, 27 April 2007 (UTC)
Please, just kill the boxen. Doesn't contribute to anyone's understanding of Puccini? Occupation - composer? Well, yes. But it's just useless. Not needed. Moreschi Talk 12:45, 27 April 2007 (UTC)

Also against the boxes; glad to see it gone. --Myke Cuthbert 21:40, 27 April 2007 (UTC)

This has been discussed on the Wikipedia:WikiProject composers page in the hope that it would not have to be hashed out on every single article. There is a clear consensus there among editors of composer articles that infoboxes are not helpful. We should not need to convince the whole encyclopedia to have the exact same style - this part of the encyclopedia has chosen not to have infoboxes for now, and I hope that can be ok. Mak (talk) 02:17, 28 April 2007 (UTC)
In fairness to the infobox side, I think that the wishes of the editors of a particular page tend to trump the wishes of editors of a general group of pages--if otherwise then we, writing about WikiProject Composers, wouldn't have the right to form a consensus against infoboxes since the larger project, biography, has decided for them. So in general, right, it should not be necessary to argue against infoboxes on every single page, but if an editor of a particular page wants to include one, I think we need to engage in conversation at that page. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Mscuthbert (talkcontribs) 05:18, 28 April 2007 (UTC).
Sure, I agree with you. I just have a problem when a person's only contribution to a page is to add an infobox. Mak (talk) 21:37, 28 April 2007 (UTC)
Especially when they're an "anonymous" ISP. If you know what I'm saying...--Folantin 21:42, 28 April 2007 (UTC)
Agreed on these points. (Now if only I could get automatic signatures so HagermanBot would stop bugging my Talk page.) --Myke Cuthbert 22:54, 28 April 2007 (UTC)

Comment[edit]

By the way, no-one's picked up the "liguarian" sea? 122.106.160.25 (talk) 23:19, 22 October 2010 (UTC)

Fixed -- thanks. Antandrus (talk) 23:46, 22 October 2010 (UTC)

More affairs added[edit]

I added a couple of sentences about Puccini's affair with Blanke Lendvai and Baroness von Stangel; in any discussion of his love-life, it seemed to me that affairs lasting 5 years or longer were worthy of comment.Ammilne (talk) 16:55, 3 May 2019 (UTC)

Support for fascism urgently needs sources, or should be dropped[edit]

The discussion of whether or not Puccini supported fascism is in urgent need of authoritative citations for claims like that "it has been proven that" Puccini supported fascism before the 1919 elections. I have seen material from this wikipedia article used wholesale in places like educational material distributed by the San Francisco Opera, including this statement about fascism; I haven't found anything like an authoritative reference online. Let's not propagate undocumented allegations. Please, if someone has a good bio of Puccini, or other scholarly source, and can document this, do so. If this isn't done soon, say within a month, I think the unsupported statements in this section should be removed. MorphismOfDoom (talk) 22:53, 26 August 2012 (UTC)

That Puccini was an early supporter of Fascism -- and I mean early, i.e. before its full awfulness was apparent -- is pretty well established. "It has been proven that" is rather bald; I'd take it out. "There is evidence that ..." may be better. Plenty of documentation for this -- here's just one of many from Google Books: [2]. Michael Steen, in The Lives and Times of the Great Composers, goes so far as to say Puccini joined the Party; I'm not sure this is exactly true. [3] Antandrus (talk) 01:58, 27 August 2012 (UTC)
Done.--Smerus (talk) 09:05, 27 August 2012 (UTC)

Query about information on individual works in this bio[edit]

Dear fellow editors: User Smerus removed a certain amount of material that I added to this article recently, having to do with Turandot. [I refer to this edit: 07:59, 26 August 2012‎ Smerus (talk | contribs)‎ . . (28,099 bytes) (-1,023)‎ . . (→‎Later works: remove detail inappropriate to bio article - belongs in article on the opera) (undo)] I'd like to get some input/comment on this. I recognize the excellent work of Smerus on this article -- he has done a lot. I must thank him for recognizing that in my citation of major arias in Turandot I managed to omit Nessun Dorma (!), for example.

Here is my question arising from what I added, and what Smerus removed.....

In general, this article seems to me to be lacking in description of the kind of artist Puccini was. While it is important to get the usual biographical details of major life events into a bio article, I think for an artist an article also needs to give some idea of the sort of *artist* the person was. To do this, I think there has to be some discussion of the content, subject, and style of the artist's works. I fully agree with the goal Smerus seems to have been pursuing in his edit: avoidance of a situation where the bio article recapitulates everything in each article about each of Puccini's works. However, I think what I added didn't go anywhere near the point of being excessive or inappropriate for a bio article. I don't want to simply undo the edit -- because, among other things, that can be somewhat rude. Also, while I had something definitely in mind when I added the info, it may be there are better ways to accomplish what I was trying to do, and one of the editors of this page may be able to do better.

I am thinking in terms of what this article should look like a year or so and many edits from now. As it stands, the article is cited for needing improvement for lack of citations (something I also tried to remedy to some extent). But I think it is also clear that in terms of content, the article does not do justice to Puccini's stature in the world of opera. So, in my opinion, those taking an interest in this page should be working to expand the article to give a fuller picture of the man and artist.

---> All of my opinions, by the way, are offered for comment and discussion, not because I think my opinions are necessarily correct and must prevail.

On thing that the article presently lacks, in my opinion, is information about the kind of composer and dramatist Puccini was. The article as it stands provides little insight into the where Puccini fits in the operatic tradition, what his musical style was like, and how he approached combining music with drama. Without providing such information, the article omits the most important things about Puccini as an operatic composer. In my opinion, a longer term goal for this article should be that it will provide such information, giving a complete portrait of the artist as well as the man (complete by encyclopedic standards, I mean), while at the same time not becoming bloated with material that properly should remain in separate articles about individual works.

The reason I am asking for comment is because I would like to know if others who are working on this page agree with my general viewpoint of where the page should go from here, and, if so, because I would like to solicit opinions as to what the best way is to make it happen. It could be that the material I put in just wasn't that useful or interesting -- this is part of the editing process. But before I do much more work on this page, I'd like to have a sense as to whether my overall view of what should be part of this article is within or without the mainstream.

In my opinion, this article should include some reference to the fact that Puccini, throughout his career, was concerned with understanding and incorporating advances in musical technique being made by other composers like Richard Strauss and Debussy, and some reference to how these concerns manifested themselves in Puccini's work (for example, in the more advanced harmonics of La Fanciulla del West and Turandot). I think a goal of those taking an interest in this page should include giving some inkling of other aspects of Puccini's musical style -- his frequent use of 'authentic' melodies related to his libretto -- such as the use of the Jasmine Flower melody in Turandot, the melody that is sometimes identified as Old Dog Trey in Fanciulla (I've seen it also cited as being a native american melody), the Star Spangled Banner in Butterfly, even perhaps his use of authentically-pitched church bells in act III of Tosca. The article should mention that much of his work is through-composed, sometimes making use of the 'arioso' style, etc., but that all works contain at least one stand-alone 'aria.' A comparison could be made to the earlier Italian tradition of operas made of sequences of musical numbers (e.g., early to mid-career Verdi), and composition using leitmotivs (Wagner and progeny). The article should inform readers of the immense trouble Puccini took in finding and perfecting his libretti. The article should also provide some insight into the word 'verismo' as it is applied to Puccini. It should provide some insight into where he fits into the operatic tradition (i.e., Italian school, but influenced by Wagner and Strauss), and specifically within the Italian operatic tradition (i.e., inheritor of the mantle of Verdi, 'verismo' composer, and the only Italian composer after Verdi to have more than one opera in the standard repertory).

All of this should be done in an 'encyclopedic' mode, of course -- this material would be appropriate not because these are great insights into the work of Puccini, but because these ideas are part of a stable, well-documented critical consensus about Puccini.

Which brings me to my edit, and its removal by Smerus. In my opinion, to do what I have described above, and give an idea of what kind of artist Puccini was, this bio article needs to include more discussion of his work. To some degree, this will require discussion of individual works, rather than mere generalities. What I added, and what was removed, was some detail about one of Puccini's works (Turandot) that was meant to give an idea of what it was Puccini is thought to have been trying to accomplish with that work. His stated aim was to create a fantasy/fairy tale about transcendent love, merging (as Gozzi did before him) exoticism of Asia with traditional Italian commedia dell'arte. He was also continuing his efforts to incorporate advances in music theory into the italian opera tradition. Knowing this about the work helps one understand this final phase of Puccini's life as an artist.

Last bit before I conclude this long post. Here's an example of where I think the dividing line should be between what goes in the bio article versus what goes in the articles about individual works. Regarding Tosca, I think *this* article should note that in Tosca Puccini used melodic motifs to identify certain characters and emotions, and that these have been compared to Wagner's use of leitmotivs, with one of the differences between them being that Puccini's motifs remain essentially unchanged throughout the opera, whereas Wagner's leitmotivs are constantly being modified. If someone can find a good source, this could tie into the discussion of Puccini's place in the larger operatic tradition: Italian composers, including the giant Verdi, were faced with factions demanding that they adopt or reject Wagnerian compositional ideas. What belongs in the article about Tosca itself (and not in the bio article) is any further discussion about the motifs, such as Puccini's un-Wagnerian use of Cavarodossi's theme E lucevan le stelle to dramatize Tosca's leap, the use of the whole-tone scale in certain motifs (e.g., the main motif belonging to Scarpia), etc. [Most of which is in the the Tosca article as it stands].

And let me close with a shout-out to Smerus for his fine work on the page so far.

Comments? David.thompson.esq (talk) 02:32, 14 September 2012 (UTC)

  • My comment for what it is worth. Articles about composers are about the composers , articles about their works are about their works. Details about the latter don't belong in the former I think unless some externally referenced and sourced opinion indicates that they are significant in the life and development of the composer. I in this way agree with David.thompson.esq. We all have our favourite bits, but to expatiate on them unreferenced in a biography article is a form of WP:OR. I cannot claim to be a Puccini authority - my only intention was to tidy up the article so that it conformed in structure and basic content to other composer biographies. I used for my model in this the articles on Richard Wagner and Giacomo Meyerbeer which I was associated in bringing to GA status. I hope that those who do know more about the composer may take this article to GA as well. It's not my intention to work significantly on it any further.--Smerus (talk) 09:08, 14 September 2012 (UTC)
  • The main problem with those additions was that they were in the wrong section and interrupt the "flow" of the life story with undue detail which is distracting to the reader. A properly referenced and coherent account of his use of motifs, the evolution of his musical style, approach to drama, etc. would be appropriate in the Style section, which is currently very poor. Incidentally, I have just drastically pruned the "Music" section and changed the heading to "Works". There's no need to repeat the intricate detail on versions, etc. already present in List of compositions by Giacomo Puccini. - Voceditenore (talk) 09:33, 14 September 2012 (UTC)

The La bohème rift[edit]

We seem to have nothing, either here or at La bohème, about the rivalry between Puccini and Leoncavallo over the competing versions of this opera and the bitter personal rift it caused between them when Puccini discovered Leoncavallo had already started writing his version. -- Jack of Oz [Talk] 09:42, 29 March 2013 (UTC)

Request for Comment re Article rating[edit]

This article was last rated in 2006, and has come a long way since. Should the article be submitted for re-evaluation? Do we want t try to get it up to Good Article status? Right now, I would guess we're at 'pretty good'. I'm not too familiar with the rating process, or whether the ratings have utility that makes them a worthy focus of effort. David.thompson.esq (talk) 03:53, 18 February 2015 (UTC)

Assessment comment[edit]

The comment(s) below were originally left at Talk:Giacomo Puccini/Comments, and are posted here for posterity. Following several discussions in past years, these subpages are now deprecated. The comments may be irrelevant or outdated; if so, please feel free to remove this section.

B-class, bordering on Start
  • poor structure
  • copyright problems with pictures. Both poster and second portrait claimed to be PD because the author died more than 70 years ago. But as the authors (the artist who designed the poster, or the photographer) are not mentioned, it is impossible to verify
  • in-line citations need to be added
  • Possible POV Errabee 12:21, 28 September 2006 (UTC)

Last edited at 12:21, 28 September 2006 (UTC). Substituted at 16:14, 29 April 2016 (UTC)

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