Conchita (opera)

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Conchita is an opera in four acts and six scenes by composer Riccardo Zandonai. The work uses an Italian language libretto by Maurizio Vaucaire and Carlo Zangarini which is based on Pierre Louÿs's 1898 novel La Femme et le pantin. The work premièred in Milan at the Teatro dal Verme on 14 October 1911 with soprano Tarquinia Tarquini, who later married Zandonai in 1917, in the title role.[1] Her portrayal was lauded by critics and she went on to perform Conchita at the Royal Opera, London (1912), the Cort Theatre in San Francisco (1912), the Philarmonic Auditorium in Hollywood (1912), the Heilig Theatre in Portland (1912), the Metropolitan Opera House in Philadelphia (1912), the Chicago Grand Opera Company (1913), the Metropolitan Opera in New York City (1913), and the Teatro di San Carlo in Naples (1913).[2]


The cover of the score of Conchita which was printed by G. Ricordi & Co in 1912.
Role Voice type Premiere Cast, 14 October 1911[3]
(Conductor: Ettore Panizza)
Conchita soprano Tarquinia Tarquini
Mateo tenor Piero Schiavazzi
Rufina mezzo-soprano Ida Zinolfi
Dolores soprano Elvira Lucca-Cannetti
A merchant tenor Giuseppe Sala
A guide tenor Giuseppe Sala
Garcia bass Enrico Vannuccini
Sereno bass Enrico Vannuccini
Inspector bass Enrico Vannuccini
Tonio bass Aurelio Viale


The story takes place in Seville.

Conchita Pérez, a poor cigar maker, is wooed by Matteo, but she resists his advances. Matteo pays her mother some money to relieve their poverty. Offended, Conchita escapes and becomes a somewhat famous flamenco dancer. Matteo tracks her down and continues his advances as she resists them. To prove his love, she organizes a meeting with a fake lover in front of Matteo who becomes very irate as a result. She finally has proof of his love for her, which she now can reciprocate.


  1. ^ Waterhouse, John CG (1992), 'Zandonai, Riccardo' in The New Grove Dictionary of Opera, ed. Stanley Sadie (London) ISBN 0-333-73432-7
  2. ^ Casaglia, Gherardo (2005). "Tarquinia Tarquini". L'Almanacco di Gherardo Casaglia (in Italian).
  3. ^ Casaglia, Gherardo (2005). "Conchita, 14 October 1911". L'Almanacco di Gherardo Casaglia (in Italian).