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Tu vedrai la sventurata

Opera details:

Opera title:

Il Pirata


Vincenzo Bellini




Il Pirata Synopsis


Il Pirata Libretto


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Aria details:









Previous scene: Fermate nessun si apressi
Next scene: Oh! s'io potessi dissipar le nubi

Tu vedrai la sventurata (Il Pirata) - Giuseppe Morino (live 1987)

Singer(s): Mirto Picchi Domenico Donzelli

Madness, the Gothic, and Bellini's Il Pirata. Sicily. 13th century. Act II. Gualtiero meets Imogene again. Ernesto, arriving, conceals himself and overhears the end of their passionate declarations of love. He is discovered, and exits with Gualtiero, each determined to fight to the death. It is Ernesto who is killed. Gualtiero gives himself up to justice, and, as he is taken away, he prays that Imogene may forgive him: "Tu vedrai la sventurata".
She appears in a state of anguish and sees visions of her dead husband: "Col sorriso d'innocenza" - Maria Callas (1959)
Giuseppe Morino in Bellini's IL PIRATA (live 1987):

Mirto Picchi in Bellini's IL PIRATA (1958):

IL PIRATA - Maria Callas, New York 1959 (Complete Opera Bellini):


Now that is what I call Belcanto. The "mixed" head voice ("voce mista") is a feature of this pre-1914 style. The full belted high register, which made Caruso a popular favorite, breaks the suave romantic legato which was the great glory of this school of singing. It is NOT an easy thing to do!!
By the standards of a Rubini or a Donzelli, YES, Pavarotti and even Gedda were violent singers. Big screams from the chest that would have horrified Rossini and even Donizetti. At least Gedda knew how to sing softly (Pearl Fishers) which Pavarotti couldn't do. His "Una furtiva lagrima" is all loud, like Di Stefano.
Learning how to sing softly (sotto-voce) and mezza-voce (mid volume), not only in the mid register but in the high register as well is ESSENTIAL.
Why do singers today always sing LOUD, LOUD??
Several reasons perhaps for louder singing today. As indicated, it is not so easy to sing in the mixed head-voice in the upper register. Also, the musical demands of Verdi, Puccini, Wagner, and the verismo school (power not mezza voce), and larger modern orchestras, compared to most of those of the past. Finally, "charmless" changes in public taste (as in everything else). Bad taste today excludes falsettone, portamento and accacciatura, favored by singers such as Bonci and De Lucia. Tenor Giuseppe Morino incorporated, at least in Martina Franca, some of those techniques...


"The pharyngeal voice is sandwiched between the basic and the falsetto; small wonder, then, that is has been ignored or, shall we say, smothered in the folds of indiscriminate thick cord singing so prevalent today... The modern methods of forced breath pressure singing induce the employment mainly of the thick underlying folds of the cords, making it impossible for the pharyngeal to function." Edgar Herbert-Caesari, The Voice of the Mind (1951).


"To cover the notes is related to managing the 'passaggio'. For most tenors this transition is around F#. The problem is that the same singing technique the tenor is using in his central tessiture, often produces in the top notes an unpleasant, open sound. To avoid this there are basically two options:

1. Use the Belcanto technique and go for the 'falsettone', what almost everybody were doing until the 1830s. The tenor role in the Italian opera of the early 19th century, was sung in falsettone. For instance, Domenico Donzelli (the tenor that premiered Pollione), wrote to Bellini that he was able to use his chest voice up to G3, and then he switched to the falsettone. What 'falsettone' was, it's not totally clear. Reading the singing manuals of the period, it should be something similar to the 'voce mista', but...

2. Use the Caruso technique, and cover those notes. This is like turn your mouth around, picking up the sound with your palate, and moving it up to the upper facial resonators. Most tenors today sings this way, the ideal result is a powerful and liberated sound, that remains uniform through all the tessiture."

le stratosferiche tessiture di Gualtiero...

Florez (

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Tu vedrai la sventurata
Che di pianto oggetto io resi;
Le dirai che s'io l'offesi,
Pur la seppi vendicar.
Forse un dì con me placata,
Alzerà per me preghiera,
E verrà pietosa a sera
Sul mio sasso a lagrimar.

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Sheetmusic in our database with this aria

Anthology of Italian Opera: TenorBellini: Favorite Tenor Arias

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