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The longest encore in history is ...
A fact that has never happened in the history of music, neither before nor after!

The longest encore in history is. . . the repetition of the entire opera: it happened one evening in February 1792 in Vienna. At the Theater an der Burg, the imperial court theater (now rebuilt and known as the Burgtheater) had just staged the world premiere of The secret marriage, directed by the composer himself, the great Domenico Cimarosa.

The success was sensational; the work was very much appreciated, in particular by the most illustrious of spectators, the emperor himself, who had been the client. Leopoldo II therefore asked not for an encore of some aria or duet he particularly liked, but simply for start over  - he celebrated with the company, made them serve dinner, and the opera (lasting about three hours!) Was repeated in its entirety the same evening.

A fact that has never happened in the history of music, neither before nor after!

Kaiser Leopold II
Kaiser Leopold II

Shortly thereafter, The secret marriage it would have reaped successes throughout Europe: the Italian premiere of the opera was given at the Teatro alla Scala in Milan on February 17, 1793, then it arrived in Dresden, Madrid, Barcelona; he made his debut in England in January 1794 at the King's Theater in London, in Portugal at the Teatro Nacional São Carlos in Lisbon in August of the same year, in Paris at the Théâtre-Italien in May 1801, and during the nineteenth century he met at least a dozen translations into other languages, including Czech and Russian. 

It landed in the United States in January 1834, when it was presented at the Italian Opera House in New York, the theater founded by Lorenzo da Ponte (in association with the noble Don Vincenzo Riva Finoli), who had been the librettist of the trilogy of Italian operas by Mozart.

The secret marriage it was successful everywhere, and since then it has remained uninterrupted in the repertoire, becoming the emblem of the eighteenth-century comic opera, thanks to the brilliant theatrical plot and the copious melodic vein.

The libretto is the work of Giovanni Bertati (Martellago 1735 - Venice 1808) at the time Poet Cesareo at the Viennese court on the appointment of the emperor Leopold himself. Bertati wrote about seventy librettos, for the most part playful dramas, set to music by various composers, including Galuppi, Paisiello, Anfossi, Traetta, Naumann, Gazzaniga and others. The booklet of Secret marriage it is generally considered to be his best work.

Domenico Cimarosa (Aversa, 17 dicembre 1749 – Venezia, 11 gennaio 1801)
Domenico Cimarosa (Aversa, December 17, 1749 - Venice, January 11, 1801)

It is based on a real stream of French and English sources, starting Le mariage à la mode, pictorial cycle in six paintings (1745) by the famous English painter William Hogarth, from whom the comedy derives The clandestine marriage (Drury Lane, 1766) by George Colman and David Garrick, the greatest English actor of the eighteenth century. The plot then arrives in France, where it is taken up by two successive opéras-comique, the second of which (The clandestin Mariage de Ségur and Devienne, 1790) was probably the direct source of Bertati, who also made use of many consolidated elements characteristic of the eighteenth-century playful work.

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