Puccini: the Man, the Music and his Place in History – a talk by Alexandra Wilson

Marking the centenary of Puccini’s death, this pre-performance talk will reflect upon the composer’s status as a historical figure. Opera historian Professor Alexandra Wilson situates Puccini within the cultural contexts of his time and argues that he was the composer who brought the operatic art form into the modern age. She examines how Puccini’s works were seen during his lifetime, traces their colossal rise to success over the century since, and considers why they still speak so powerfully to audiences today. The talk will also outline the important role played by English National Opera in popularising Italian opera in Britain.

Professor Alexandra Wilson is a musicologist and cultural historian. After holding Junior Research Fellowships at Worcester College and St Hilda’s College, Oxford, she taught at Oxford Brookes University for 18 years. She is the author of three books on Puccini: The Puccini Problem (Cambridge University Press), Puccini’s La bohème (Oxford University Press) and Puccini in Context (Cambridge). She has also written about the history of operatic culture in Britain in her book Opera in the Jazz Age (Oxford). She can often be heard on Radio 3 and 4, has written for publications including BBC Music Magazine, Opera, The Critic, and The Daily Telegraph and writes programme essays for all the UK’s major opera companies.

Talk free to ENO  Orchestra with Tenor Joseph Calleja ticket holders.


Jun 27 2024


6:00 pm

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Council Chamber
Oxford Town Hall, St Aldates, Oxford OX1 1BX
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