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    Bella Campbell

    Moreschi and the Voice of the Castrato
    by Nicholas Clapton

    🔍 Moreschi and the Voice of the Castrato | READ MORE 🔍

    • Language: english
    • Release date: December 1, 2008
    • Publisher: Haus Publishing
    • Genres: biography
    • Format: hardcover, 354 pages
    • ISBN: 9781905791422 (1905791429)
    • Author: Nicholas Clapton

    About The Book

    Known as the “Angel of Rome,” Alessandro Moreschi was the last surviving castrato singer of the Vatican choir, and the only castrati whose voice was recorded. Its ethereal, haunting quality was highly prized for centuries in the papal basilicas and opera houses of Europe (readers can request a copy on CD using details in the book).

    The castrati tradition was established in Italy in the sixteenth century by Pope Clement VIII, and by the seventeenth century had moved onto the secular operatic stage, where castrato singers were feted as the “pop stars” of their day. No other singers came close to matching their fame and notoriety. By the nineteenth century, however, their very existence had become an embarrassment, and when Moreschi himself joined the Sistine Chapel in 1883, there were only six castrati left in the choir, and by 1903 they were officially no more.

    The strange and lonely life of Alessandro Moreschi was lived in the shadows of great events and great institutions, his personality glimpsed only by inference and allusion. Written by the acclaimed musicologist and countertenor Nicholas Clapton, this is a perceptive and informed study of the last survivor of a perennially intriguing part of Western cultural history. Clapton addresses the complexities inherent in such a complicated and historically neglected subject, establishing that castrati singers were an integral part of the lineage of Western music that should not be judged or condemned from the perspective of the twenty-first century.

    A professor of singing at the Royal Academy of Music, Nicholas Clapton’s career as a counter-tenor has seen him particularly involved in performing the repertoire of the great castrati. In 2006, he produced and presented a television documentary on the castrato voice for the BBC.

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