4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs

Other than arias drama

A dramatic scene from Otello

Original image of act III set from Otello.
Original image of act III set from Otello.

The concertate from act III of Otello has long been a favorite scene in the history of opera. With that in mind, I’m shocked at the disparity of views on YouTube between this and the arias and duets from Otello.

People are missing the good stuff. This is our latest “other than arias” submission.

Video:

Otello atto III final

Domingo, Frittoli & Nucci

Domingo, Frittoli & Nucci

The scene is terrifyingly distasteful in its 16th-century Shakespearean context. The treatment of Desdemona by Otello is horrifying, or at least should be, in our culture.

Traditionally Otello hurtles Desdemona to the ground at this point in the drama as he is convinced of her infidelity with Cassio. Infidelity is still in fashion but publicly throwing one's spouse to the ground in front of the Doge (the executive commander of the Venetian Republic), well, that has gone out of fashion.

The video clip I’ve included is particularly chilling. Otello, here portrayed by Placido Domingo, doesn’t throw her to the ground but orders her to prostrate herself before him.

Video:

Otello- 3. A terra!... si...

1955 Tebaldi MET

1955 Tebaldi MET

I don’t know that I’ve ever seen a more effective moment in an opera. I can taste the shame and disgrace that must fill Desdemona’s mouth.

The rest of the scene hits me wrong, though, because the music is different than the standard version of Otello. This is apparently from the Paris version Verdi put together in 1894, which also included ballet music in the third act.

It feels as though Verdi’s heart wasn’t in it and indeed it wasn’t for the ballet music. According to classical.net Verdi thought the ballet music was, "artistically speaking, it is a monstrosity."

I’m unable to find a resource that explains why Verdi rewrote this. At least I can’t find it online. Maybe I’ll darken the door of a university library at some point and find out the truth.

Here's something you might be interested in.
Submit a free classified
or view all

Previous article

Greensky Bluegrass 20th Anniversary, Sam Smith Livestream from Abbey Road, Full Moon Halloween Hike

Events October 29-October 31, 2020
Next Article

Toronto real estate giant is funder behind killing height limit

Brookfield Properties supplies $402,205 of $513,404 Yes on A money
Original image of act III set from Otello.
Original image of act III set from Otello.

The concertate from act III of Otello has long been a favorite scene in the history of opera. With that in mind, I’m shocked at the disparity of views on YouTube between this and the arias and duets from Otello.

People are missing the good stuff. This is our latest “other than arias” submission.

Video:

Otello atto III final

Domingo, Frittoli & Nucci

Domingo, Frittoli & Nucci

The scene is terrifyingly distasteful in its 16th-century Shakespearean context. The treatment of Desdemona by Otello is horrifying, or at least should be, in our culture.

Traditionally Otello hurtles Desdemona to the ground at this point in the drama as he is convinced of her infidelity with Cassio. Infidelity is still in fashion but publicly throwing one's spouse to the ground in front of the Doge (the executive commander of the Venetian Republic), well, that has gone out of fashion.

The video clip I’ve included is particularly chilling. Otello, here portrayed by Placido Domingo, doesn’t throw her to the ground but orders her to prostrate herself before him.

Video:

Otello- 3. A terra!... si...

1955 Tebaldi MET

1955 Tebaldi MET

I don’t know that I’ve ever seen a more effective moment in an opera. I can taste the shame and disgrace that must fill Desdemona’s mouth.

The rest of the scene hits me wrong, though, because the music is different than the standard version of Otello. This is apparently from the Paris version Verdi put together in 1894, which also included ballet music in the third act.

It feels as though Verdi’s heart wasn’t in it and indeed it wasn’t for the ballet music. According to classical.net Verdi thought the ballet music was, "artistically speaking, it is a monstrosity."

I’m unable to find a resource that explains why Verdi rewrote this. At least I can’t find it online. Maybe I’ll darken the door of a university library at some point and find out the truth.

Sponsored
Here's something you might be interested in.
Submit a free classified
or view all
Previous article

Cooler weather just an opening for Pelly's clam chowder

Northwest oysters, local fish, and a sourdough bread bowl in Carlsbad
Next Article

How Otay changed, secret TJ gardens, Mission Valley's future

San Diego State's Paseo project, building a Rancho Santa Fe mansion, downtown high rises never stop
Comments
0

Be the first to leave a comment.

Sign in to comment

Sign in

Art Reviews — W.S. Di Piero's eye on exhibits Ask a Hipster — Advice you didn't know you needed Best Buys — San Diego shopping Big Screen — Movie commentary Blurt — Music's inside track Booze News — San Diego spirits City Lights — News and politics Classical Music — Immortal beauty Classifieds — Free and easy Cover Stories — Front-page features Excerpts — Literary and spiritual excerpts Famous Former Neighbors — Next-door celebs Feast! — Food & drink reviews Feature Stories — Local news & stories From the Archives — Spotlight on the past Golden Dreams — Talk of the town Here's the Deal — Chad Deal's watering holes Just Announced — The scoop on shows Letters — Our inbox [email protected] — Local movie buffs share favorites Movie Reviews — Our critics' picks and pans Musician Interviews — Up close with local artists Neighborhood News from Stringers — Hyperlocal news News Ticker — News & politics Obermeyer — San Diego politics illustrated Of Note — Concert picks Out & About — What's Happening Overheard in San Diego — Eavesdropping illustrated Poetry — The old and the new Pour Over — Grab a cup Reader Travel — Travel section built by travelers Reading — The hunt for intellectuals Roam-O-Rama — SoCal's best hiking/biking trails San Diego Beer — Inside San Diego suds SD on the QT — Almost factual news Set 'em Up Joe — Bartenders' drink recipes Sheep and Goats — Places of worship Special Issues — The best of Sports — Athletics without gush Street Style — San Diego streets have style Suit Up — Fashion tips for dudes Theater Reviews — Local productions Theater antireviews — Narrow your search Tin Fork — Silver spoon alternative Under the Radar — Matt Potter's undercover work Unforgettable — Long-ago San Diego Unreal Estate — San Diego's priciest pads Waterfront — All things ocean Your Week — Daily event picks
4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs
Close