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     Mancinelli: ERO E LEANDRO    Table of Contents     				  				   Band 9

The Mapleson Cylinders - Program Notes

- Libretti
- Mancinelli: ERO E LEANDRO
- Band 8

Band 8

Act II: PeŠna chorus excerpts:

(a) "[Il cantico dell'or]gie! PeŠna!" ... "PeŠna! PeŠna!"

(b) "PeŠna! O Venere! O Adone!" ...to end of act

Edouard De Reszke (bs), Ariofarne

Metropolitan Opera Chorus & Orchestra--

Luigi Mancinelli

March 4 and/or 14 (matinee), 1903

[Undated slip with (a); the dates given were the only performances of the work in the Mapleson years. All three Ero cylinders were recorded at the same speed, and they probably stem from the same performance.]

Leandro (Leander), an athlete and poet, is in love with Ero (Hero), a priestess of Aphrodite. In the opera's second act, the archon Ariofarne, also in love with Ero, claims that he has been ordered by an oracle to reestablish an ancient service in a seaside town, and consecrates Ero to the duty of signalling the approach of storms, so that rituals may be undertaken to appease the angry waters. He then offers to release her from this if she will love him, but Ero refuses. Leandro, who threatens Ariofarne, is banished to Asia, on the opposite shore of the Hellespont, and Ero takes the solemn oath of service, swearing to remain virginally pure. At the end of the act, the moon is rising and Ariofarne signals the start of Aphrodisian orgies, represented by a fugal chorus that one critic in 1899 thought "the result, undoubtedly, of the composer's admiration for the splendid mastership shown in the score of Verdi's 'Falstaff." Only about twelve measures are missing between Mapleson's two cylinders from this chorus.

[original]

ARIOFARNE

(a)
[La luna sorge,
rimbombi alfine il cantico dell'or]gie! ( The moon rises, its rays shine on the orgies, contrasting with the light of the lamps and torches. Ero, draped in a silver veil, stands at the altar during these revels. )

CHORUS
PeŠna! PeŠna! S'afferri la coppa
che il seno di Venere fremendo plasmÚ! ( These lines are developed in a four-part fugal exposition. Here, and throughout, subsidiary parts continually shout "PeŠna!" )
PeŠna! S'afferri la coppa!
PeŠna! che il seno di Venere fremendo plasmÚ! ecc. ( These lines are sung quickly, in unison. )
Gia l'orma che impresse l'olimpica poppa
d'aromi e di vivido liquor si colmÚ! ( These two lines are developed in a four-part fugal exposition. )
Beviam, tutto Ť cenere--PeŠna!
Beviam, delirio e canzone--PeŠna!
fuggevole e vana--PeŠna! ( These lines are introduced by the basses, then treated contrapuntally. )
PeŠna! PeŠna! ecc.

CHORUS
(b)
PeŠna! PeŠna! Peŗna!
O Venere! O Adone! ecc.
PeŠna! PeŠna! ecc.

[translation]

ARIOFARNE

The moon is rising,
now at last shout forth the orgiastic anthem! ( The moon rises, its rays shine on the orgies, contrasting with the light of the lamps and torches. Ero, draped in a silver veil, stands at the altar during these revels. )

CHORUS
Praise! Praise! Now raise the goblet
that the breast of Venus tremblingly formed! ( These lines are developed in a four-part fugal exposition. Here, and throughout, subsidiary parts continually shout "PeŠna!" )
Praise! Now raise the goblet!
Praise! that the breast of Venus tremblingly formed! ( These lines are sung quickly, in unison. )
Already the bowl shaped by the Olympian nipple
is filled with aromas and vivid liquids! ( These two lines are developed in a four-part fugal exposition. )
Let us drink, all is ashes--Praise!
Let us drink, delirium and song--Praise!
fleeting and vain--Praise! ( These lines are introduced by the basses, then treated contrapuntally. )
Praise! Praise! etc.

CHORUS
Praise! Praise! Praise!
O Venus! O Adonis! etc.
Praise! Praise! etc.

[Begin Page 46]

     Mancinelli: ERO E LEANDRO    Table of Contents     				  				   Band 9