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Gian Carlo Menotti

Publisher: G. Schirmer

The Saint of Bleecker Street (1954)
Text Writer
Libretto by the composer.
G Schirmer Inc
Opera and Music Theatre
Sub Category
Year Composed
3 Hours 50 Minutes
English, French, German, Italian
Solo Instrument(s)
2 Sopranos, 4 Mezzo sopranos, 2 Baritones, Bass
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Programme Note
Gian Carlo Menotti The Saint of Bleecker Street (1954)
1955 Pulitzer Prize in Music

Cast List:

   ASSUNTA: Mezzo-Soprano
   CARMELA: Soprano
   MARIA CORONA, a newspaper vendor: Soprano
   HER DUMB SON, about 16 years old
   DON MARCO, a priest: Bass
   ANNINA: Soprano
   MICHELE: Tenor
   DESIDERIA: Mezzo-Soprano
   SALVATORE: Baritone
   CONCETTINA, a child
   A NUN
   Neighbors, Friends, Policemen, etc.


Annina, the Saint of Bleecker Street, wants to take the veil before she dies, but her non-believing brother Michele tries to prevent her from taking part in religious rites. When Michele refuses to acknowledge his girlfriend Desideria, she accuses him of having an unnatural love for his sister. Michele stabs Desideria to death. Annina goes through with the religious ceremony before her brother can stop her, then dies.

View Full Score - Act II
View Full Score - Act III
View Vocal Score

  • Ensemble
    Spoleto Festival Orchestra, Spoleto Festival Chorus
    Julia Melinek (Soprano), Timothy Richards (Tenor), Pamela Helen Stephen (Mezzo Soprano), John Marcus Bindel (Bass Baritone), Sandra Zelter (Soprano), Amelia Farrugia (Soprano), Yvonne Howard (Mezzo Soprano), Vitali Rozynko (Baritone)
    Richard Hickox
Medcalf pulled off the crowd scenes and related the story well in a noble attempt to return Menotti to the operatic mainstream... I loved it all, and once again found myself wondering why so much time is wasted launching new operas that miss the plot entirely when there are so many hidden gems waiting to be explored.
Francis Carlin, Opera Now,01/03/2010
The Saint of Bleecker Street Catherine Malfitano, stage director Central City Opera/France 21 July 2007; Denver, CO …As Central City Opera’s riveting new production of [The Saint of Bleecker Street] makes clear, it’s hard to imagine a more relevant opera in a world racked by religious divisions and mindless violence. …But operagoers who can embrace the religious aspects of this opera or set them aside will discover a powerful, deeply human story about a group of everyday people who seem extraordinarily authentic in both their weaknesses and strengths. Catherine Malfitano, who appeared several times in the title role, including a televised production in 1978, brings all her experience and insights to bear as the production’s director, shaping an utterly gripping production with a visceral sense of realism… Significantly boosting this production are the spectacular sets…Conductor Hal France, a Central City favorite, adroitly paces the action onstage and makes the most of Menotti's lush, evocative score… The operas of Menotti, who died earlier this year, are ripe for reappraisal and revival. This terrific production demonstrates the musical and dramatic effectiveness of one of his greatest creations — a work that deserves to be regularly performed and widely known.
Kyle MacMillan, The Denver Post,26/07/2007
[Menotti's] art is exquisitely constructed and powerful. THE SAINT OF BLEECKER STREET [is a] brilliantly theatrical score that takes on difficult issues unflinchingly, in melodically appealing music that is always theatrically effective. Among [the] opera's many virtues, in addition to its taut libretto and genuinely beautiful music, is the way it effortlessly creates a sense of an entire community. Characters always emerge from a definite time and place, specifically characterized in their words and music.
John Story, Fanfare,01/01/0001
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