Rodrigo (opera)

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Rodrigo (HWV 5) is an opera in three acts composed by George Frideric Handel. Its original title was Vincer se stesso è la maggior vittoria ("To overcome oneself is the greater victory"). The opera is based on the historical figure of Rodrigo, the last Visigothic king of Hispania. The libretto was based on Francesco Silvani's II duello d'Amore e di Vendetta ("The conflict between love and revenge"). Dating from 1707, it was Handel's first opera written for performance in Italy, and the first performance took place in Florence late in 1707.Knapp, J. Merrill, "Handel's First Italian Opera: Vincer se stesso è la maggior vittoria or Rodrigo (1707)" (January 1981). Music & Letters, 62 (1): pp. 12-29.

The opera was revived in 1984, in Innsbruck. A lost fragment from Act III had been found in 1983, and a more complete production was given by the Handel Opera Society under Charles Farncombe at Sadler's Wells Theatre in London in 1985. Another revival took place in Karlsruhe in 1987.

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Synopsis

Prologue

Prior to the start of the opera, Rodrigo had deposed the previous king, Vitizza, who was corrupt, but then Rodrigo indulged in the same vices after he had become king. One example was his seduction of Florinda, who bore his son as a result. Rodrigo had intended to leave his wife Esilena, who was...
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