In simple terms, Opera is a musical theatrical drama in which the actors are singers. The majority of acting parts will be sung as opposed to spoken as in a play. Opera has been famously loved for centuries for its wealth of style and variation surpassing that of any other musical form. It remains a favorite among composers and audiences.
The opera first emerged in Florence, Italy toward the end of the 16th century spreading to other cities and composers across the country. As opera entered the 17th & 18 centuries, the form's influence expanded into other European countries where it was reformed and advanced by composers Gluck, Lully, and more importantly, Mozart.
As opera extended its reach into the western world of the 1800s, audiences were eager to attend. Brilliantly skilled composers like Pucinni, Rossini, and the renowned Guiseppe Verdi wrote, each in their respective personal styles, some of the most loved and legendary operas to date. Meanwhile, composers such as Richard Wagner took his unique 'musical dramas' in directions which would permanently affect the entire musical world.
Today opera retains a constant and popular standing at the summit of musical and theatrical artistic acommplishment.
Composed by Jean-Baptiste Lully (Giovanni Lulli) 1684
'Peter Grimes' (Going Mad Scene)
Composed by Benjamin Britten 1945