The Met's first production in more than 60 years is "treated with a keen appreciation for the special requirements of verismo and a practically vanished performing tradition. Scotto has found her ideal role…a great performance… Domingo sang glamorously… Levine's affectionate concern for the music told in every measure… The massive sets by Ezio Frigerio serve the work exquisitely … Piero Faggioni’s graceful direction strikes a perfect balance” (New York Magazine)
An acclaimed Italian guitar virtuoso and composer, Mauro Giuliani, along with Fernando Sor, was one of the last great classical proponents of his instrument until its revival in the early twentieth century. He studied counterpoint and the cello, but on the six-string guitar he was entirely self-taught, and that became his principal instrument early on. Italy abounded with fine guitarists at the beginning of the nineteenth century (Carulli remains the most familiar today), but few of them could make a living because of the public's preoccupation with opera. So Giuliani embarked on a successful tour of Europe when he was 19, and in 1806 he settled in Vienna, where he entered the musical circle of Diabelli, Moscheles, and Hummel. He solidified his reputation with the 1808 premiere of his Guitar Concerto in A major, Op. 30, and was soon heralded as the greatest living guitar virtuoso. Even Beethoven noticed Giuliani, and wrote of his admiration for him. Perhaps to return the favor, Giuliani played cello in the 1813 premiere of Beethoven's Symphony No. 7.
“Poor is not he who has little, but he who always needs more. “ Pepe Mujica has become famous for being the „world’s poorest president“. The former guerrilla fighter and flower grower is currently considered one of the most charismatic politicians of Latin America. Old and young believe in him thanks to his humble lifestyle and his unconventional manners, where political protocol is concerned. His political visions, among them his sensational regulation of the marihuana market, have created international interest. Since the spring of 2010, Uruguay has been led by a president who, as a young man, revolted against the power of the state he now heads with both words and arms. Pepe Mujica was a founding member of the urban guerrilla group „Tupamaros“, which fought the state in the repressive Uruguay of the 1970s.