Donald Macleod on how Donizetti became exasperated by the pettiness and incompetence of Naples's opera houses and felt frustrated by the attitude of the city's strict censors.
Gaetano Donizetti composed almost 70 operas in 19th-century Italy, the age of the impresario, the prima donna and the star tenor. Donald Macleod traces his extraordinary life.
As a successful composer, Donizetti was exasperated by the pettiness and incompetence of Naples' opera houses, and deeply frustrated by the attitude of the city's strict censors. When his leading lady defied them by swearing on stage, Donizetti's career hung in the balance. Featuring recordings by Anna Netrebko, Beverly Sills and Thomas Hampson.