An Analysis Of Giuseppe Verdi's Othello

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Arrigo Boito once told Giuseppe Verdi that “an opera is not a play” and that “eight bars are enough to restore a sentiment to life; a rhythm can re-establish a character; music is the most omnipotent of all arts.” It can be argued that Giuseppe Verdi’s Otello may be a greater work of art than Shakespeare’s play Othello. Otello is so much more than just a translation from Shakespeare’s play. Verdi took Shakespeare’s 3,500 line play and turned it into a masterpiece of operatic literature with fewer than 800. Boito, the librettist of this opera, reduced the plot and the story down to as little as possible leaving the gaps to be filled by the music of Verdi.
Shakespeare’s Othello begins on the streets in Venice. Roderigo, a young gentlemen and former suitor of Desdemona, and Iago, an ensign who has believes he has been
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Iago leaves shortly thereafter to tell Othello of Desdemona’s father, Senator Brabantio, reaction. Together, Senator, Brabantio, Othello and Desdemona meet with the Duke of Venice to discuss the marriage. Senator Brabantio accuses Othello of seducing his daughter, but Othello tells how he won Desdemona over by

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