Abstract and Keywords
This chapter traces how often-performed canonic works did not emerge in London’s King’s Theatre until the end of the eighteenth century, seen in the special popularity of opera buffa. From its opening in 1704, the King’s Theatre offered only operas written and produced in Italy, and it was unusual for a piece to be kept on stage for more than five years. The piece that broke that rule was La buona figliuola, the setting by Niccolò Piccinni of Carlo Goldoni’s libretto on Samuel Richardson’s novel Pamela. First performed in Rome in 1760, the opera was given in London almost every year from 1766 to 1796, and ten other pieces in that genre also appeared unusually often. This chapter is paired with Jennifer Hall-Witt’s “Repertory opera and canonic sensibility at the London Opera, 1820–1860.”
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