Opus "Ah! His first destination was Prague where he stayed until April and wrote the scene and aria "Ah perfido" for soprano and orchestra, op. Which soprano singer did Beethoven have in mind when he composed the song? The Prague nobility often invited him and appreciated him very much. On one of its two title pages the only preserved source of op. Thus, it would not be surprising if he gave the Countess a copy with a dedication.
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The reason it bears an opus number high in relation to its date of composition is that, though it was written in , it was not published until The piece was probably written for its first performer, the then-celebrated soprano Josepha Duschek. A decade or so after composing the work, Beethoven reflected that it was suited more to a theater setting than to the concert hall.
He was unusually emphatic in stipulating that it needed "a curtain," or similar environs, to achieve its proper effect. The work is a setting of verses by Pietro Trapassi, a Roman who was court poet in Vienna and who wrote under the name of Metastasio. The text deals with a young woman betrayed by her lover, expressing the rage she experiences. At first, she pleads with the gods to punish him, but then asks for mercy for him. Then she offers to die for him, instead.
After bewailing her fate, she asks for mercy. The music begins dramatically with the soprano intoning the words, "Ah, perfido! Still, for all the rage she expresses, she does not erupt with a potent outburst to vent her feelings, but instead maintains an intensity that seems to border on just such an outburst. The aria music, marked Adagio, is most moving and effective in its heartrending beauty.
Even if it is strongly reminiscent of Mozart , it is it charming enough not to seem derivative. The tempo returns to Allegro as the soprano lashes out at her cruel treatment at the hands of fate. There is a brief return to an Adagio tempo before the Allegro conclusion. The orchestral writing is effective throughout, even if it, too, owes something to Mozart.
The range of emotions that he depicts in the music, together with the ebb and flow of tension, are remarkably well balanced.
The work, known for its immense vocal difficulty, was premiered on November 21, , in Leipzig. A typical performance of it lasts about from about 12 to 15 minutes.
Opus 65: "Ah! Perfido", сцена и ария для сопрано и оркестра
Ah! Perfido, Op.65 (Beethoven, Ludwig van)