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    Description

    To watch any opera lover listen to a favorite work, eyes clenched tight in concentration and passion, often betraying a tear, is to be almost envious. What must it be like, you might think, to love a piece of music so much?

    And now one of music's most gifted teachers is offering you the opportunity to answer that very question, in a spellbinding series of 32 lectures that will introduce you to the transcendentally beautiful performing art that has enthralled audiences for more than 400 years.

    As you meet the geniuses - including the likes of Monteverdi, Mozart, Verdi, Wagner, and Puccini - who have produced some of the landmark artistic achievements of the form, and listen to many of their most beautiful moments, you'll grasp how the addition of music can reveal truths beyond what mere spoken words can convey, and how opera's unique marriage of words and music makes the whole far greater than the sum of its parts.

    Beginning with opera's origins in the early 17th century and continuing into the 20th, you'll trace the art's evolution and its ability to convey every shade of human emotion, whether sorrow or joy, drama or buffoonery. You'll understand how different types of voices enhance character. And you'll understand how the invention of the aria gave operatic composers a new power to make human emotions soar, adding to the impact of what continues to be one of the most beautiful musical forms ever devised.

    PLEASE NOTE: When you purchase this title, the accompanying reference material will be available in your Library section along with the audio.

    ©1997 The Teaching Company, LLC (P)1997 The Great Courses

    Ce que les auditeurs disent de How to Listen to and Understand Opera

    Moyenne des évaluations utilisateurs. Seuls les utilisateurs ayant écouté le titre peuvent laisser une évaluation.
    Global
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    Interprétation
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    Commentaires - Veuillez sélectionner les onglets ci-dessous pour changer la provenance des commentaires.

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    • Global
      2 out of 5 stars
    • Interprétation
      2 out of 5 stars
    • Histoire
      2 out of 5 stars

    Not a book but a course

    On the plus side, we get recordings of operatic moments, which wouldn’t be on an audiobook.

    On the other hand, where a book would deep dive and be factual, this course is light on content, spends litterally hours detailling plots of a few operas and is laden with dad jokes, folksy language (« my friends ») and horrible italian accent (« recitative »).

    Maybe for people who have never seen an opera.

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    • Global
      5 out of 5 stars
    • Interprétation
      5 out of 5 stars
    • Histoire
      5 out of 5 stars
    Image de profile pour Kristi R.
    • Kristi R.
    • 18/09/2015

    Professor Robert Greenberg does it again!

    Lectures

    1 Introduction and Words and Music, I

    2 Introduction and Words and Music, II

    3 A Brief History of Vocal Expression in Music, I

    4 A Brief History of Vocal Expression in Music, II

    5 Invention of Opera and Monteverdi's Orfeo, I

    6 Invention of Opera and Monteverdi's Orfeo, II

    7 Invention of Opera and Monteverdi's Orfeo, III

    8 Invention of Opera and Monteverdi's Orfeo, IV

    9 The Growth of Opera, the Development of Italian Opera Seria, and Mozart's Idomeneo, I

    10 The Growth of Opera, the Development of Italian Opera Seria, and Mozart's Idomeneo, II

    11 The Growth of Opera, the Development of Italian Opera Seria, and Mozart's Idomeneo, III

    12 The Growth of Opera, the Development of Italian Opera Seria, and Mozart's Idomeneo, IV

    13 The Rise of Opera Buffa and Mozart's The Marriage of Figaro, I

    14 The Rise of Opera Buffa and Mozart's The Marriage of Figaro, II

    15 The Rise of Opera Buffa and Mozart's The Marriage of Figaro, III

    16 The Rise of Opera Buffa and Mozart's The Marriage of Figaro, IV

    17 The Bel Canto Style and Rossini's The Barber of Seville, I

    18 The Bel Canto Style and Rossini's The Barber of Seville, II

    19 Verdi and Otello, I

    20 Verdi and Otello, II

    21 Verdi and Otello, III

    22 Verdi and Otello, IV

    23 French Opera, I

    24 French Opera, II

    25 German Opera Comes of Age

    26 Richard Wagner and Tristan und Isolde, I

    27 Richard Wagner and Tristan und Isolde, II

    28 Late Romantic German Opera—Richard Strauss and Salome

    29 Russian Opera, I

    30 Russian Opera, II

    31 Verismo, Puccini, and Tosca, I

    32 Verismo, Puccini, and Tosca, II


    I love Professor Greenberg’s lectures and when I saw this one available on Audible I had to try it. I have never been an opera buff before (except for a fondness to Mighty Mouse growing up) but since joining Amazon Prime and noticing all of the great operas available to listen or watch on Video, I have been catching up.

    What Professor Greenberg does in these lectures, (32 45 minutes in length) is tell you the history of Opera, give you some examples of some great Operas and just let you listen and enjoy.

    Things I learned from this course:

    1. Opera got it’s start in monastic Gregorian chants and other early choral works.
    2. The language that an opera is written determines it’s style. Italian is very expressive, while German is more guttural, if you understand what I mean.
    3. There are so many operas out there to enjoy, and I can’t wait!
    I enjoyed listening to these lectures while I was in the hospital recently and it really got me through.

    If you want to stretch your mind outside of your usual course, I highly recommend any class by Professor Robert Greenberg. He knows how to make music interesting and he makes it easy to understand. This was a real joy to hear.

    57 personnes ont trouvé cela utile

    • Global
      4 out of 5 stars
    • Interprétation
      4 out of 5 stars
    • Histoire
      4 out of 5 stars
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    • Kindle Customer
    • 28/11/2014

    Learning and loving it

    I have been attending operas for 40 years. Although I have no musical training, I've always loved going to the opera, particularly Mozart. This course taught me a lot about opera terms, the history of the composers, the history of music and the how language influenced opera (different rhythms in the language require different phrasing in the music). Professor Greenberg tossed many jokes, often in the language of the composer, into the mix, about 2/3 of which amused me. The recordings selected nicely illustrated Prof. Greenberg's points.

    Please, I must make one additional observation. If you are attempting to make any changes in your life, in addition to learning about opera, I recommend that you commit yourself to doing so whenever Prof. Greenberg says either "Please!" or "Quickly". If you promise to do 10 pushups, for example, you will likely get 70 to 100 done per lecture with a commitment to "Please!", and 20 to 30 if you go for "Quickly". If you're a drinker, you will be well on your way to alcoholism.

    Nonetheless, I truly enjoyed the lectures and the lecturer. If you're curious about or not thoroughly knowledgeable about opera, this is a great place to start learning and (I hope) loving it.

    35 personnes ont trouvé cela utile

    • Global
      3 out of 5 stars
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      2 out of 5 stars
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      2 out of 5 stars
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    • Kindle Customer
    • 06/01/2015

    "The Origin of Opera" Would Be More Appropriate

    While I had intended to engage a course about understanding and appreciating opera as an art form, this course traced the history of opera from its emergence in Italy, then its development in France and Germany and concluding with Czech opera. The lecturer tells the story of a couple of operas from each country and period and uses production cuts from the operas he is explaining. This course lulled me to sleep on many a commuter train to and from work.

    13 personnes ont trouvé cela utile

    • Global
      5 out of 5 stars
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      5 out of 5 stars
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      5 out of 5 stars
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    • Amazon Customer
    • 13/08/2014

    Wish It Was Even Longer

    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    Yes! I loved the parallel of the historical development of opera in general with the analysis of each individual opera's context, story and music.

    What was one of the most memorable moments of How to Listen to and Understand Opera?

    The description of singing voices and how each is used to further an opera's impact.

    Which scene was your favorite?

    Tosca, one of my favorites and the author's as well.

    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    The description of Desdemona from Otello.

    12 personnes ont trouvé cela utile

    • Global
      5 out of 5 stars
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      5 out of 5 stars
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      5 out of 5 stars
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    • Feather
    • 26/05/2015

    If you love music but could never get into opera..

    I had low expectations. I had listened to Prof. Greenberg's survey course and loved it. I wanted more. I took a leap on the opera course. I have no regrets at all. I bought a ticket for Le Nozze and have bought the recording and the libretto. I want to learn Italian so I can sing along!!

    11 personnes ont trouvé cela utile

    • Global
      5 out of 5 stars
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      5 out of 5 stars
    • Histoire
      5 out of 5 stars
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    • Ona
    • 17/05/2014

    The Fat Lady Will Never Sing for this one

    Would you consider the audio edition of How to Listen to and Understand Opera to be better than the print version?

    I haven't read the print version, so I really could not compare the two. However, if you simply read the work, you would miss out on all the wonderful music clips used throughout.

    What did you like best about this story?

    Professor Greenberg's humorous way of dealing with what could be a fairly dry topic.

    Which character – as performed by Professor Robert Greenberg – was your favorite?

    Now I can't see that this really applies. He covers a lot of territory in the history of opera. Figero is certainly memorable, but I wouldn't necessarily call him a favorite. Otello was also well done.

    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    This question so does not apply to this work.

    Any additional comments?

    This is my second "Great Course" audio book performed by Professor Greenberg. He clearly enjoys his topic -- music -- and is adept at couching history in modern terms without getting tooo campy about it. I enjoyed this book and "how to listen and appreciate music" very much. Both added a great deal to my appreciation of music history and classical format.

    9 personnes ont trouvé cela utile

    • Global
      5 out of 5 stars
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      5 out of 5 stars
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      5 out of 5 stars
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    • Rali Christo
    • 11/09/2015

    Greenberg teaches, amuses.

    A balanced approach, as much culture/history/philosophy on the one hand and music on the other.
    - Jude Anthony

    7 personnes ont trouvé cela utile

    • Global
      5 out of 5 stars
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      5 out of 5 stars
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      5 out of 5 stars
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    • Katey
    • 19/04/2015

    Perfect for new opera fans

    I went to my first opera performance earlier this year and became an instant fan. This course was very enjoyable to listen to and was very helpful for helping me understand the art form. Professor was very knowledgeable, interesting, and engaging. Highly recommended.

    7 personnes ont trouvé cela utile

    • Global
      5 out of 5 stars
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      5 out of 5 stars
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    • eag
    • 26/03/2015

    Greenberg is fantastic

    If you're familiar with the Great Courses at all, you know that the quality is generally outstanding. The opera course is the one that makes me feel like I should revise my other ratings downwards so that it stands out more! He's passionate and knowledgeable, which are essential, but he's unique in his ability to make me invested in opera and to describe it as something that can and does resonate in modern life. Often after a course my thoughts are, that was really interesting, I learned a lot, I'm glad I listened. But now my thoughts are, I want to listen to more opera!

    7 personnes ont trouvé cela utile

    • Global
      3 out of 5 stars
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    • Amazon Customer
    • 21/08/2020

    Okay info but almost amusingly sexist

    The casual sexism of this speaker's world view is so outdated that it's almost quaint. Speaking of Queen Elizabeth I, one of the greatest monarchs in English history, all he can think to say about her is that she was "ostensibly a virgin" when she died. Similarly, he calls "Nessun Dorma" a love song, which indeed is how Verdi envisioned it. Verdi's excuse was that he lived in a deeply sexist culture, but a contemporary speaker might be expected to recognize that far from having anything to do with love, "Nessun Dorma" is the cry of an entitled male who's determined to force an unwilling woman to do what HE wants, regardless of the cost to anyone else. Worse, the premise of the opera is that no matter what she says, what she actually needs is a sexual relationship with a big strong dominant male, as if it were true that when a woman says no, she really means yes. I deeply love this music and gladly get past the mind-boggling male chauvinist piggery for the sake of the beauty, but it does need to be acknowledged.

    4 personnes ont trouvé cela utile

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    • Global
      5 out of 5 stars
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      5 out of 5 stars
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      5 out of 5 stars
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    • Norjen
    • 15/12/2019

    Equally profound and entertaining

    Professor Greenberg presents his theme equally profound and entertaining. Spicing his main story with the one or other humorous gossip about composers, conductors, singers and critics, 500 hears of opera history spring to live.

    In the lesson he follows a clear concept:
    1) Line out as much music theory as is necessary
    2) Name the main figures of era and their cooperation or rivalry
    3) Chose one work for in depth analysis

    And so we come to hear a good part of:
    1) Orfeo et Eurydice by Monteverdi
    2) Le Nozze di Figaro by Mozart
    3) Othello by Verdi
    4) Tristan und Isolde by Wagner
    5) Boris Godunow by Mussorgsky
    6) Tosca by Puccini
    7) Salome by Strauss

    Besides these "main dishes" there is a lot of "amuse oreilles". I found the lecture so enthralling that I committed the sin of binge hearing. And look now forward to the courses about the operas of Mozart, Verdi and Wagner.

    4 personnes ont trouvé cela utile

    • Global
      5 out of 5 stars
    • Interprétation
      5 out of 5 stars
    • Histoire
      5 out of 5 stars
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    • Andreas Flint
    • 21/03/2017

    Great

    Good story and very well planned - even though there are overlaps to his other titles.

    1 personne a trouvé cela utile