Showing posts with the label Berliiner Luft

Some music for the pandemic

Va, pensiero from Nabucco by Giuseppe Verdi
This recording of Va, pensiero, also known as The Chorus of the Hebrew Slaves, from Verdi's opera Nabucco was made as a tribute to Italy's medical workers and others fighting Covid-19 in that country. The Wikipedia article on the aria, which includes the Italian lyrics with an English translation, notes Verdi composed Nabucco at a difficult moment in his life. His wife and small children had all just died of various illnesses. Despite a purported vow to abstain from opera-writing, he had contracted with La Scala to write another opera and the director, Bartolomeo Merelli, forced the libretto into his hands.
There is a touching image at 4:40 of a medic cradling Italy as a new-born child.
I first became familiar with this beautiful chorus back in the 1950s when it was regularly played on Hospitals Requests on Wednesdays at lunch time on Radio Éireann, Ireland's state-owned national radio station.
The libretto of the opera, which is set…