“Lesser known operas about pirates”

Haydn’s Orlando Paladino, not quite an opera about pirates

😀 a new(ish, from Pirate Day) search engine term and one of the finest (if not the) to date!

But aside from Belllini’s Il pirata, which is about a pirate and lesser known, I can’t think of anything much. There’s Verdi’s Il corsaro and… Pirates of Penzance. Is the eponymous flying Dutchman a pirate? Peter Grimes… not really. Neither are they lesser known.

Anyone know more on the subject?

About dehggial

Mozart/Baroque loving red dragon

Posted on November 7, 2015, in opera humour and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink. 13 Comments.

  1. Simon Boccanegra was referred to as a ‘corsair’ by the crowd in the Prologue.

    • Yes, he left piracy and went straight into politics 🙂

      Probably there are some deep catalogue bel canto operas that fit the bill (even deeper catalogue than Il pirata), much in the way Operas That Take Place in Scotland keeps landing in that territory. (Now if Sir Walter Scott had written a pirate story…)

      • Ok, so Boccanegra too, then.

        the Walter Scott connection seemed very weird at first but I guess he’s had a bigger influence on its time that I thought. I used to be a big fan in my teenage years. Had I known so much opera was inspired I’d’ve got into Bellini and them much earlier.

        Hm, I wonder if there isn’t some Meyerbeer on the subject…

  2. Technically I suppose you could regard Theseus and Pirithoos as pirates in Cavalli’s Elena… But The Great Pirate Opera is still to be done. Though I do have a great idea for a pirate version of Xerxes (I’ve done drawings for the costumes and sets somewhere – I’ll show them to you at some point) 😉

  3. “lesser known operas about pirates” is a fantastic search term – wish I knew some more titles to add to the above list

  4. Vivaldi’s Fida Ninfa is basically a story of people abducted by pirates.

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