More info on Palestrina


Hans Pfitzner


Hans Pfitzner


12 June 1917, Munich (Prinzregententheater)




Palestrina Synopsis


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About the opera Palestrina

Palestrina is an opera by the German composer Hans Pfitzner, first performed in 1917. The composer referred to it as a Musikalische Legende (musical legend), and wrote the libretto himself, based on a legend about the Renaissance musician Giovanni Pierluigi da Palestrina, who saves the art of contrapuntal music (polyphony) for the Church in the sixteenth century, through his composition of the Missa Papae Marcelli. The wider context is that of the European Reformation and the role of music in relation to it. The character of Cardinal Borromeo is depicted, and a General Congress of the Council of Trent is the centrepiece of Act II.
The conductor of the premiere was Bruno Walter. On 16 February 1962, the day before he died, Walter ended his last letter with: "Despite all the dark experiences of today I am still confident that Palestrina will remain. The work has all the elements of immortality".

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Roles in Palestrina

Giovanni Pierluigi da Palestrina Tenor
Lukrezia Contralto
Ighino Soprano
Silla Mezzo-Soprano
Bernardo Novagerio Tenor
Bishop of Budoja Tenor
Carlo Borromeo Baritone
Giovanni Morone Baritone

More details roles

Popular videos from Palestrina

Pfitzner Palestrina Die Messe Ach Act Three 201569
Die Messe
Hans Hotter
Julius Patzak

All scenes from Palestrina

Nr.Title scenePopularityOperaComposerActTypeVoicesLang.Roles
1Allein in dunkler Tiefe Popularity:

Opera: PalestrinaComposer: PfitznerAct:

Type: Voice: Language: German

2Die Messe Popularity:

Opera: PalestrinaComposer: PfitznerAct:

Type: Voice: S 3cAs TLanguage: German