Composer of the Week: Giacomo Puccini

Italy’s 20th-century operatic great

TV & Radio Information
BBC Radio 3
Monday, April 1, 2013 - 12:00

Donald MacLeod explores the relationship between the music of Giacomo Puccini (1858-1924) and the unification of Italy.

The composer succeeded Verdi as the nation’s foremost operatic voice and his works were central to embodying the new country’s ideology in a cultural form.

Throughout the week case studies of the major operas will contextualize the composer’s life and times: the programme will look at the composer’s evocation of bohemian life in La bohème; his journey into dark material for the political Tosca and the exoticism evoked in Madame Butterfly.

Photo: © Thinkstock