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Alfredo Catalani
Composer of Lucca

Second Edition

The full, tragic story of Puccini’s great rival, now available in English for the first time.

Born in Lucca four years before Puccini, Alfredo Catalani (1854–93) was the main hope of Italian opera in the 1880s. Alarming conservative critics with the sophisticated modernism of his music, he nonetheless won steadily increasing popularity with the opera-going public. But Catalani’s entire adult life was a grim and increasingly hopeless battle with tuberculosis; the year after his greatest triumph with La Wally (1892), he died at just 39, leaving the future of Italian opera to other men, all of whom had been influenced by his innovations. This is the story of the man and his music, as told by friends and contemporaries.

This new edition has many more illustrations than the first edition. Revisions have been made to the text throughout, including useful cross-references to The First Lives of Alfredo Catalani.


“A valuable addition to the library on late 19th century Italian opera, this book sheds new light on the short, tragic life of an important composer whose music is consistently interesting and worthy of greater attention.”

—Alan Mallach, author of ‘The Autumn of Italian Opera’ and ‘Pietro Mascagni and His Operas’.

Sample Chapter

A table of contents and a sample chapter are available here.

How to order

Alfredo Catalani: Composer of Lucca second edition, is available in paperback and hardback, with updates to the ebooks to follow shortly. Links to the versions available from Amazon and Lulu are provided here. The ePub ebook should be available soon from other ebook stores. Both the Kindle and the ePub ebook versions are DRM-free.


Review Copies

To request a review copy, please contact Paul Durrant giving details of the publication in which you will be reviewing the book.

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Alfredo Catalani: Composer of Lucca is Copyright © 2009 David Chandler

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Last updated Monday, 15 March, 2010

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