The Legacy Of Giacomo Puccini

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Giacomo Puccini was born on the 22nd of December in 1858. His family lived in the town of Lucca which was situated in the Tuscany region of Italy. He was part of a very musically talented family who for several generations had controlled the music at the San Martino cathedral. It was understood that one day he too would hold the coveted position and when his father passed away when he was just 8 years old, the position of choirmaster was held for him to reach adulthood. He spent many years training with former students of his father and eventually attended a local university where he studied the works of Verdi and other great composers. He completed his studies at the Milan Conservatory and the started writing his very first opera.…show more content…
He set pen to paper and wrote his operatic version of the tale the same year. Initially the play was met with such disdain that Puccini pulled the play immediately and did not let it go on the second night. After several reworking’s, a final piece was released to standing ovations around the world in 1906 (Schickling & Vilain, 1998). Riding on the wave of his success, he wrote another piece based on a work by David Belasco entitled La faniculla del West which was commissioned by the Metropolitan Opera in 1910 but it was met with harsh criticism as it did not conform to traditional American standards of the time. It was at this time that his life once again started to take a downward turn as his marriage was failing and filled with distrust that often ended in bitter fights and his works were not as well received by the masses as he had hoped they would be. He did have a small success with Giana Schicchi but his next work, Turandot, would remain unfinished. In the spring of 1924, he was diagnosed with throat cancer and underwent radiation treatments. The treatments seemed to be successful but on November 29th of the same year he suffered a fatal heart attack. His final incomplete work, Turandot, was conducted by his good friend, Arturo Toscanini in April of 1926 at the La Scala in Milan, the place that had been so critical of Puccini’s previous works. When Toscanini reached the end of the work that was written by
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