University of Rochester

EVENT: "Music and Poetry in the 19th Century Italian Salon," a lecture and recital by the Risorgimento Project

TIME, DATE, AND PLACE: 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 3, in lower Strong Auditorium on the University of Rochester's River Campus

ADMISSION: Free and open to the public.
Note: Parking is free and available on University lots after 7 p.m. weeknights.

January 18, 2005

The Risorgimento Project—a chamber ensemble dedicated to reviving the performance of 19th century Italian chamber and salon music—will present an evening of music, commentary, and readings at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 3, in lower Strong Auditorium on the University of Rochester's River Campus.

The program, "Music and Poetry in the 19th Century Italian Salon," shows that Italy was not only the birthplace of operatic masterpieces by composers like Verdi and Rossini. The country also had a rich musical world in the drawing rooms of the nobility and high bourgeoisie, where musicians were regular and welcome guests

Performers include Risorgimento Project co-founders Julia Grella and Francesco Izzo, who will be joined by bass Jeffrey Tucker in a program featuring the small-scaled works—art songs—of famous opera composers writing especially for the salon, particularly their settings of Italian poetry by Dante, Petrarch, and the Arcadian poets.

Grella, a mezzo-soprano, is an acclaimed performer and scholar who has given concerts and lectures throughout the United States, Italy, and England. Izzo is a pianist and musicologist who has published extensively on 19th century opera and has appeared as a recitalist and orchestral soloist throughout the United States, Brazil, Italy, and Great Britain. Tucker has performed with the Sarasota Opera, Opera Omaha, Central City Opera, and the Metropolitan Lyric Theater.

Since its founding in 1997, the Risorgimento Project has earned critical praise for its performances at the American Institute for Verdi Studies, Columbia University, Dante Society of Massachusetts, the Società Dante Alighieri in Rome, and other institutions. The group's local performance is sponsored by the Italian Program of the Department of Modern Languages and Cultures at the University of Rochester and cosponsored by the Italian American Community Center, the Susan B. Anthony Center for Gender and Women's Studies, the University of Rochester Alumni Association, the Department of History, and the Department of Music. For more information, contact (585) 275-4253.