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Opera Abbreviated: La Cenerentola/Cinderella

The Metropolitan Opera presents Rossini's La cenerentola.

La cenerentola takes some liberties with the story of Cinderella as we know her. This zany and delightful opera dates from 1818.

Successful performances depend on a spot-on conductor, a hunky tenor with lots of coloratura and a lovely mezzo-soprano with lots and LOTS of coloratura. This is what I mean by coloratura:  

Rossini used the fast notes to express joy, terror or sexual availability. There's nothing predatory about the music for Cenerentola.

Fans of Cinderella needn't despair. While there's no glass slipper, we do have a ridiculous step-father, and the two horrible step-sisters are in place, called Clorinda and Tisbe.

The handsome prince is called Ramiro. He switches identify with his valet Dandini, the better to see if he's loved for himself. Dandini has a blast impersonating the prince. You bet all ends well.

This is the final Opera Abbreviated for the Met in HD season. Let me know if you had as much fun as I did! Thanks!

Christopher Purdy is Classical 101's early morning host, 7-10 a.m. weekdays. He is host and producer of Front Row Center – Classical 101’s weekly celebration of Opera and more – as well as Music in Mid-Ohio, Concerts at Ohio State, and the Columbus Symphony broadcast series. He is the regular pre-concert speaker for Columbus Symphony performances in the Ohio Theater.