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Adelina Patti

Updated on November 14, 2013

Who is Adelina Patti?

Adelina Patti her original name Adela Juana Maria Patti. Born February 19, 1843 Madrid, Spain. She died September 27, 1919 at Craig-y-Nos Castle Brecknockshire, Wales.

Adelina was a famous Italian Soprano singer of the 19th century; her voice was considered small but was extraordinary. A very agile light voice with high upper extension capable of fast vocal ornamental trills and purity of quality, one of the greatest music characterized by Coloratura; her parents was former singers, (Father) Salvotore Patti a Tenor who was born in Sicily known as a type of classical male singer, who's vocal ranged in one of the highest of male singers. (Mother) Caterina Chiesa Barilla Patti, a soprano. They both were working in Madrid, Spain at the time when Adelina was born.

Adelina Patti 19th Century

Adelina's Career

She was a remarkable actress and achieved her greatest success in comedy, especially in 1859 French opera cacique in three acts with music, the roles of Dinorah in Meyerbeer's Dinorah Zerlina, in W.A. The opera remain successful in Paris since 1912 under original title Opera-Cacique. The second act was Mozart’s Don Giovanni, a staple of the standard operatic repertoire; is currently tenth on the opera base list of the most performed opera worldwide. Adelina was trilled, when Mozart entered the work into his catalogue as an opera buffo. Although sometimes classified as comic, it blended comedy, melodrama and supernatural elements. Third act was Rosina in Rossini's The Barber of Seville. Rossini having arranged much of the music of this part for her, but was proven to be one of the greatest masterpieces of comedy buffo of all opera buffo, her successes on the modern opera stage attests to the greatest.

She grew up in New York

As a child, Adelina went to the United States and she appeared in concerts in New York at the age of 7 years old. She grew up in Wakefield in the Bronx. Her first debut at age 16 in November 24, 1859 in the title role Donizetti’s Lucia di Lammermoor at the Academy of Music in New York. Drama tragic in (tragic opera) three acts by Gaetano Donizetti, who was an Italian composer from Bergamo, Lombardy.

She sang a mina in Vincenz Bellini's La Sonnambula at Covent Garden, London, where she performed regularly until 1885. This title role of Amina (sleepwalker) with its high tessitura is describing the most wonderful range for a given singer.

Her many roles she sang in the operas of Giachino Rossini, known as Italian composer who wrote 39 operas, scared music, chamber music, songs and some instrumental piano pieces. Vincenzo Bellini, known as Italian opera composer for his long-flowing melodic lines, which he was named the Swan of Catania, Giacomo Meyerbeer a German opera composer of Jewish birth who was described as the most successful stage composer of the nineteenth century. His style was achieved by his merged of German orchestra with Italian vocal tradition and Charles Gounod a French composer best known for his Ave Maria, Opera Faust and Romeo et Juliette. Adelina had the opportunity to experience early operas of Giuseppe Verdi, an Italian Romanic composer, primarily known for his operas that were frequently performed in opera houses throughout the world and transcending the boundaries of the genre.

Adelina Patti Theatre

Adelina Patti Theatre also known as the Craig-y-Nos Castle

In 1841 - 1843 the main building was constructed by Captain Rice Davies Powell sold and was passed down to generations, when Patti invested on a major enterprise, building program at the Castle, adding the north and south wing, clock tower, conservatory, winter garden and theatre.

In 1918 presented the winter garden for the people of Swansea where it became the Patti Pavilion. Topical plants and exotic birds flew within the garden.

Adelina in her last days spent the rest of her life at Craig-y-Nos leaving it only to sing in the premier opera houses of Europe and to tour the United States captivating the world with her incredible soprano voice. In October 1914 her last public appearance, she sang the Red Cross and filled the Albert Hall.

When Adelina died the castle was sold to the Welsh National Memorial Trust in March 1921, reconstructed as a sanatorium called the Adelina Patti Hospital for children, and then in 1959 it became a hospital for elderly. In 1986 the hospital closed but remained open for the public and became a boutique hotel for catering, conferencing and entertainments. The castles grounded are surrounded by designated County Park, which is now part of the Brecon Becons National Park.

Today the theatre remains a time capsule of the 19th century. The opera house is licensed for weddings and is used occasionally for public performances. It is listed as a grade one opera house, built to be Patti's own private auditorium.

© 2013 Delia Almestica Griffin

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