General Manager at Camerata Strumentale "Città di Prato" and ICAMus Board Member, Barbara Boganini talks about Giacomo Puccini e Amedeo Bassi: connessioni toscane in America. L'ascesa artistica del tenore italiano dalla campagna fiorentina alla gloria internazionale [Giacomo Puccini and Amedeo Bassi: Tuscan connections in America. An Italian tenor's rise from rural life to international acclaim]. At Villa Caruso - Bellosguardo, Lastra a Signa, Florence, Italy, Sunday, January 21, 2018, at 4:30 PM. Born in the little town of Montespertoli, near Florence, Bassi was acclaimed worldwide in Puccini’s “American opera” La Fanciulla del West.
This event is a collaboration of ICAMus with Museo Enrico Caruso and Teatro del Maggio Musicale Fiorentino.
READ & DOWNLOAD THE JANUARY 2018 NEWSLETTER OF VILLA CARUSO, WHICH INCLUDES DR. BOGANINI'S TALK ON PUCCINI AND AMEDEO BASSI.
This event focuses on the US debut of Amedeo Bassi, and the importance of Puccini's operas in his career, in particular La Fanciulla del West; it investigates Bassi's American successes, on the background of Italian culture and its reception in the early 1900s in the United States, at the time when Enrico Caruso was an acclaimed star of the Metropolitan Opera. Caruso premiered the role of Dick Johnson at the Met on December 10, 1910, Arturo Toscanini conducting.
Exploring the greatness of Amedeo Bassi and his career in the Americas offers a more comprehensive view of international musical life in the early 1900s.
A talk with audio and video presentation.
DR. BARBARA BOGANINI: GENERAL MANAGER AT CAMERATA STRUMENTALE "CITTÀ DI PRATO" (Prato, Italy), ICAMus BOARD MEMBER AND PUCCINI SCHOLAR SPECIALIZING IN LA FANCIULLA DEL WEST AND ITS CONNECTIONS TO AMERICAN MUSIC AND CULTURE.
Photo: June 1st, 2017; Barbara presenting on Puccini, Amedeo Bassi and Alberto Bimboni at the ICAMus Session of the international conference "Intersections", Fulvio Santo Orsitto & Simona Wright, Directors; Kent State University in Florence.
The connection Puccini – Fanciulla del West – Amedeo Bassi – Alberto Bimboni is of special interest, as it uncovers the importance of American inspiration and American musical sources in Italian opera and in American opera by Italian American composers in the early 1900s. The study of such connections offers the opportunity for research, publications and performance of new repertoire. ICAMus holds the Alberto Bimboni Collection.
The Museo Enrico Caruso, in Lastra a Signa near Florence, is located in the historic 16th-century Villa Bellosguardo, surrounded by a magnificent park. The property was purchased by the tenor in 1904. The Museum displays documentation and memories of the tenor's life and international career. Villa Caruso hosts various musical and cultural events.
A Museum devoted to operatic tenor Amedeo Bassi (1872-1949) opened on November 30, 2014 in his native town of Montespertoli, near Florence. The Museo Bassi displays portraits, photographs, autographs, librettos, and other documents related to the tenor’s performances in the role of Dick Johnson, a favorite with audiences and critics alike, and most importantly with Puccini himself, who wanted Bassi to sing the principal role in the Italian premiere of La Fanciulla del West in 1911, after he starred in the opera’s US tours earlier that year.
The Bassi Museum offers a significant contribution to discovering the connections between Italian and American music, and the influence of Puccini in the Americas.
In the photo below: Museo Amedeo Bassi, Montespertoli (Italy). Tenor Amedeo Bassi as Dick Johnson in Puccini’s La Fanciulla del West. Photographic Portrait, Moffett Studios, Chicago, c. 1911; with handwritten inscription, Florence 1915. Bassi sang as Dick Johnson in the Chicago première of La Fanciulla del West on December 27, 1910.
Photo Courtesy of Montespertoli Town Hall (Florence, Italy); Francesca Di Natali, project architect. Special Acknowledgements to Giulio Mangani (Mayor of Montespertoli), Elena Ammirabile (Dept. of Culture), Paolo Gennai (former Museum Director), Daniela Brenci (Librarian and Museum Director).
In the photo below, a view of the Museo Amedeo Bassi. This room displays Bassi’s career, the composers and the major roles that made him into an international star. The life-size portrait features the tenor in the role of Dick Johnson in Puccini’s La Fanciulla del West; the painter is M. Pastore, a pastel portrait artist active in Italy in the early 1900s; pastel & chalk on canvased cardboard, c. 1915.
Photo Courtesy of Montespertoli Town Hall (Florence, Italy); Francesca Di Natali, project architect and photographer. Special Acknowledgements to Giulio Mangani (Mayor of Montespertoli), Elena Ammirabile (Dept. of Culture), Paolo Gennai (former Museum Director), Daniela Brenci (Librarian and Museum Director).