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Mercadante, (Giuseppe) Saverio (Raffaele)

Mercadante, (Giuseppe) Saverio (Raffaele) (b Altamura, 1795; d Naples, 1870). It. composer. Early works were instr. and choral, but turned to opera in 1819 and wrote nearly 60 up to 1856. With Il giuramento (1837), he threw off the Rossinian idiom of his earlier works and developed greater dramatic power in the orch. in the style of Meyerbeer, but his works have failed to hold the stage except for occasional perfs. in Italy and in concert versions in Vienna. Choirmaster, Novara Cath., 1833. Dir., Naples Cons., 1840–70. Wrote 17 masses, orch. fantasies, songs, etc. Operas incl. Maria Stuarda (1821); Elisa e Claudio (1821); Amleto (1822); Don Chisciotte (1829); Francesca da Rimini (1830–1); I briganti (1836); Il bravo (1839); La Vestale (1840); Violetta (1853). Blind from 1862.

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Altamura

Altamura (äl´tämōō´rä), city (1991 pop. 57,874), Apulia, S Italy. It is a commercial and agricultural center. The imposing Romanesque cathedral, with twin campaniles, was begun by Emperor Frederick II in 1232.

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