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The Wireless Military Band


We have produced a Style Guide to help editors follow a standard format when editing a listing. If you are unsure how best to edit this programme please take a moment to read it.
GIOVANNA D'ARCO was Verdi's seventh opera in order of composition. It was written during the winter of 1844/5 in the unreasonably—for Verdi-short time of three months, and produced at The Scala dn Milan. The libretto, a poor one, was based on Schiller's Maid of Orleans, of which celebrated play Mr. Francis Toye, who writes of the opera in his fine ' Verdi, His Life and Works,' has no great opinion. ' If Giovanna d'Arco,' he says, ' seems to us incredible and silly, it is only one degree more silly and incredible than The Maid of Orleans.' Apparently Verdi was not happy with the libretto, and musically the opera was a failure. Contemporary criticism records only the fact that Frezzolini, as The Maid, sang superbly, and says nothing about the music except that one solitary critic refers to the overture in terms of warm praise.
SOME musicians claim that Gianni Schicchi is Puccini's finest musical effort, and it would be difficult to find a happier or more comprehending union of words and music than in this wittily sparkling one-act comic opera. The text was writen by Puccini's great friend Gioachino Forzano, a playwright of renown in Italy, and the story has the true ring of a mediaeval farce. It was first produced in 1918 in New York, together with two other one-act operas which are now not often performed. Gianni Sehicchi is, however, very popular in all continental opera houses, though in England it has not thoroughly endeared itself to English audiences. One reason for which it is difficult to find credence has been put forward for this neglect. It has been more or less authoritatively stated that the British public shies at attempting to pronounce the title of it at the Box Office, and in self-defence at the last minute books for something else-say, Carmen—instead. If it is possible there be any such, for their information the correct pronunciation is, roughly, Janny Skeeky.


Conductor: B. Walton O'Donnell
Tenor: Leonard Gowings
Unknown: Giovanna D'Arco
Unknown: Gianni Schicchi
Unknown: Gianni Sehicchi
Unknown: Janny Skeeky.

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Feedback about The Wireless Military Band, National Programme Daventry, 19.20, 14 June 1932
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