Puccini Sheet Music and Biography
Giacomo Puccini was an Italian composer who was born on 22nd December 1858.
He was from a very musical family. There were five generations of organists and composers for the Cathedral of San Martino. Sadly, his father died when he was only five years old. However, his position at the Cathedral was kept open for him and Puccini took it at the age of fourteen. Unfortunately he didn’t stay the course so ended the line after two centuries! I am sure that caused some upset in the family.
This section of Puccini’s blog reads a little bit like a soap opera. In 1884, aged twenty four he began an affair with a married woman called Elvira. Elvira had an unhappy marriage as her husband was a notorious womanizer. One day however, her husband’s actions caught up with him as the husband of one of the women he was having an affair with killed him. Around the same time Giacomo, Elvira and their son Antonio had a serious car crash. Giacomo was trapped underneath the vehicle. Fortunately, all three survived and it was at this point that Giacomo and Elvira could marry and
Marriage wasn’t the bliss that Giacomo and Elvira had envisaged, and Puccini became quite a ladies man having many affairs. As a consequence of this Elvira ended up going prison for five months after publicly announcing Puccini’s affair with their maid which lead to her suicide… (the autopsy revealed the maid died a virgin).
I am sure the soap opera continued, but …
Back to Puccini’s Music
Puccini built his reputation after writing Capriccio Sinfonico for his thesis for the Milan Conservatory. It was performed in 1883
Puccini’s most renowned works:
- 1896 La Bohème
- 1900 Tosca
- 1904 Madama Butterfly
- 1924 Turandot
Puccini’s famous opera La Bohème was not always so famous. At the time it was first performed, another opera with the same name by Ruggiero Leoncavallo was more successful. It took about ten years for audiences to decide that Puccini’s version was the best.
Following Puccini’s Madama Butterfly people called Japanese women butterflies. Puccini made various revisions to this opera and today the standard version is the fifth.
Many of the worlds greatest sopranos have put their mark on this opera including Maria Callas, Eva Marton, Leontyne Price and Renata Tebaldi.
Sadly Puccini (who died 24th November 1924) did not finish his final opera Turandot due to suffering
Turandot contains one of the most famous aria’s Nessum Dorma which is sung all around the world today.
Puccini Sheet Music and Further Reading
On music-scores.com we have over fifty arrangements of Puccini’s sheet music including various instrumental versions of Puccini’s O’mio babbino caro and Turandot: Nessum Dorma and One Fine Day: Madame Butterfly all in PDF format.
I couldn’t finish this biography without listening to the beautiful Nessum Dorma from Turandot, sung by none other than Pavorotti.