Gian Carlo Menotti, RIP

Gian Carlo Menotti, Opera Composer, Dies at 95 – New York Times
Gian Carlo Menotti, who wrote his first opera before he was 11 and went on to become perhaps the most popular and prolific opera composer of his time, winning two Pulitzer Prizes, died today in Monaco. He was 95. His death, at Princess Grace Hospital, was announced by his son, Francis.

Though critics often dismissed Mr. Menotti’s music as maudlin and unadventurous, many of them still celebrated his impressive lyric gifts, his deft touch with orchestral sound and his talent for making opera comprehensible and enjoyable for people who had previously shunned it. Of his critics, he once said, “They often spoil my breakfast but never my lunch”. His contemporaries, too, were sometimes unkind. Igor Stravinsky dismissed Mr. Menotti’s musical language as “mid-Mascagni”. The composer Luigi Nono withdrew from a project rather than allow his music to appear on the same programme as Mr. Menotti’s.

So, any of you guys at all familiar with Menotti’s music? All I’ve heard of is Amahl and the Night Visitors, but I’m not sure if I’ve ever heard anything from it. Anyone else?

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