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Music Text

Libretto by the composer, based on `L'histoire de ma vie' by Jacques Casanova (E,G)


Major roles: M,A,T,2Bar; minor roles: lyrS,2S,lyrT,BBar
hand cyms/tgl/maracas/glsp/susp.cym/wind chimes/crot/tamb/bell tree/
SD/TD/BD/vib/t.bells/bell in A/high and low brake drums-harp-

Abbreviations (PDF)

World Premiere
Ordway Music Theatre, St. Paul, MN
Arthur Masella, director
Conductor: Scott Bergeson
Company: Minnesota Opera / Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra


LORENZO Baritone
BUSINELLO Bass-Baritone
BELLINO Mezzo-Soprano
MADAME d'URFÉ Contralto
Giulieta Soprano
MARCANTONIO Treble or Soprano
Lady whose purse is stolen Soprano
Dircea Soprano
Cherinto Soprano
Madame d'Urfé's servant Soprano
Girl in Casanova's bed Soprano
Matron in Casanova's bed Soprano
A Vendor Alto
Timante Alto
Matusio Alto
Gianpaolo (the Marquis' boyfriend) Alto
Young woman in Casanova's bed Alto
Young girl of Marcantonio's age Alto
A charlatan Tenor
Demafoonte Tenor
Junior police officer Tenor
Two guards tenors
1st Inquisitor who is also Pulcinello Tenor
A montebank Bass
Chief of Police Bass
Two guards Basses
2nd Inquisitor who is also Tartaglia Bass
3rd Inquisitor who is also the Spanish Captain Bass
Time and Place

The first week of Carnival Season, 1774- Venice, Italy


A hoax is played on Casanova when the 49-year-old lover returns to Venice during Carnival, after 18 years in exile. The whole town is delighted to learn that he has been trapped into seducing an opera singer whom the public knows as Bellino, a castrato in female dress. However, as Casanova comes to know Bellino, he realizes that the singer is actually a female singer named Teresa masquerading as a male to promote her own opera career. Casanova then proceeds to turn the hoax to his advantage. He enlists the help of Teresa in fooling Madame d’Urfé, a wealthy and eccentric practitioner of the occult, whose greatest desire is to be reborn as a male. Using his renown as a sorcerer, Casanova swindles the old lady out of her money and she dies as a result of the scheme.  Casanova's cleverness, along with his reputation, clears him of all wrongdoing.


Comic, Romantic


Relationships, Society

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