THEODORA. By George Frideric Handel. libretto by Thomas Morrell. Theodora was first performed 16 March at Covent Garden Theatre. In English with. THEODORA (HWV 68) Libretto: Thomas Morell, after Robert Boyle, “The Matyrdom of Theodora and Didymus” First performance: 16th March Theodora (HWV 68) is a dramatic oratorio in three acts by George Frideric Handel, set to an English libretto by Thomas Morell. The oratorio.

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Otello — La Scala Otello: Morell quotes Handel as saying “The Jews will not come to it because it is a Christian story; and the ladies will not come because it is a virtuous one. A harpsichord and violoncello play the continuo. Water Music Music for the Royal Fireworks.

I have heard the work three times and will venture to pronounce it as finished, beautiful and labour’d [well worked-out] a composition as ever Handel made. This would prove to be his penultimate major work, and it would be a further two years before he produced his final great oratorio, Jephtha.

Recitative Irene “Ere this, their doom is past” Theodora” to My Music Add “Handel: Recitative Theodora, Septimius “Deluded mortal!

Opera Today : HANDEL: Theodora

In the temple of Venus which serves as a brothel, Theodora is frightened, but her mood changes as she contemplates the afterlife. He had a particular memory of Theodora: Listen to Lorraine Hunt Lieberson sing this divinely beautiful piece: Act III proceeds from a sense of hope and relief.


Lord Shaftesbury wrote in a letter to a friend. Act II The Romans proceed with their celebrations.

Eighty years after the event a witness decribed what had occured:. Air Valens “Racks, gibbets, sword and fire” 7. Act Three Scene 1 Irene, with the Christians Act I The scene is set in 4th century Antioch, which is occupied by the Roman army. Recitative Septimius “Mistaken wretches! A messenger arrives and warns them of Valens’s commands. He had written the oratorios Solomon and Susanna the previous year. Recitative Valens “‘Tis Dioclesian’s natal day” 3. Handel was also concerned about the audience the Christian story with a tragic ending could attract.

Theodora – George Frideric Handel – Concerts, Introduction & Performances – BBC Music

At the start of the second Act the festival in honour of the emperor and the goddesses is being enjoyed by the pagans. Recitative Didymus,Septimius “Long have I known thy friendly social soul” Handel was still showing remarkable creative abilitites when he completed Theodora in his 65th year.

When told that one of his supporters wanted to buy all the boxes for a particular performance, Handel was heard to comment: Theodora was a failure with the public and only played three times.


Valens sends Septimius to Theodora with an offer of clemency if she makes a sacrifice before libretro. Act II is more intensely dramatic, proceeding through six contrasting scenes.

The Town don’t like it at all, but Septimius arrives and warns them of the punishment they face — a punishment Theodora is happy to embrace.

As is often the case, he sometimes makes use of pre-existing musical material by other composers, but invariably transforms it in subtle and inventive ways.

Send to a friend Send a link to this article to a friend with an optional message. Words and music by Richard Wagner.

Recitative Irene “Tis night, but night’s sweet blessing is denied” There are two surviving quotes of Handel about Theodora. Recitative Didymus “Most cruel edict” 9. Retrieved 29 April Didymus enters the cell and finds Theodora asleep.

Opera Today

Theoodora, a soldier secretly converted to Christianity, asks that citizens whose consciences prevent them making sacrifices to idols be spared punishment, which Valens dismisses. The Christians maintian a vigil, led by Irene.

Theodora Anne Sofie von Otter: Das Liebesverbot, Vienna Das Liebesverbot: