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Teresa Saporiti (Codecasa) (1763 – 17 March 1869) was an Italian soprano, most remembered today for creating the role of Donna Anna in Mozart's opera Don Giovanni.

Saporiti was born in Milanmarker. Little is known about her early life, but in 1782 she and her elder sister Antonia were engaged by the impresario, Pasquale Bondini, to sing with his Italian opera company in Leipzigmarker. According to the The Cambridge Mozart Encyclopedia (and several other sources), Theresa and Antonia may have been the sisters of Caterina Bondini, who was the first Zerlina in Don Giovanni and Pasquale Bondini's wife. Antonia abandoned her career early on and died in Milan in 1787. Teresa, however, stayed with the company until 1788 and performed with them in Leipzig, Dresden and Prague, most famously as Donna Anna in the 1787 world premiere of Don Giovanni. She was an attractive woman, and several authors have speculated that Don Giovanni's emphatic line in the Act II dinner scene, "Ah che piatto saporito!" (Ah, what a tasty dish!) is a punning reference to Saporiti.

Between 1788 and 1789, she sang in Venicemarker at the Teatro Venier as Mandane in Ferdinando Bertoni's Artaserse (November 1788); as Selene in the world premiere of Pietro Alessandro Guglielmi's Arsace (26 December 1788); and as Armida in the world premiere of Guglielmi's Rinaldo (28 January 1789). She then appeared at La Scalamarker where on 20 April 1789 she sang the title role in the world premiere of Francesco Bianchi's Nitteti. She went on to perform in Parmamarker, Modenamarker, Bolognamarker, Viennamarker, Moscowmarker, and St. Petersburgmarker. In St. Petersburg she was the prima buffa assoluta in Gennaro Astarita's opera company and sang in operas by Astarita, Paisiello, and Cimarosa.

Saporiti also composed two arias, "Dormivo in mezzo al prato" and "Caro mio ben, deh senti", which were published in 1796. In her later years, she was often referred to by her married name, Teresa Saporiti-Codecasa, and lived in Milan where she held salon concerts in her house. At one of these concerts in 1841, Verdi presented the music for his opera Nabucco which was to premiere the following year at La Scala. Teresa Saporiti died in Milan on 17 March 1869 at the age of 106. Her daughter, Fulvia, continued corresponding with Verdi for several years afterwards.

References

Sources

  • Cairns, David, Mozart and his operas, University of California Press, 2006. ISBN 0520228987
  • Campana, Alessandra, "The performance of opera buffa" in Stefano La Via and Roger Parker (eds.), Pensieri per un maestro: studi in onore di Pierluigi Petrobelli, EDT srl, 2002, pp 125-134. ISBN 8870636453
  • Casaglia, Gherardo, "Saporiti", Almanacco Amadeus. Accessed 25 May 2009.
  • Keefe, Simon, "Saporiti, Teresa" in Cliff Eisen and Simon P. Keefe (eds.), The Cambridge Mozart Encyclopedia, Cambridge University Press, 2006, pp. 444-445. ISBN 0521856590
  • Deutsch, Otto Erich, Mozart, a documentary biography (English translation by Eric Blom), Stanford University Press, 1965, p. 102. ISBN 0804702330
  • Kelly, Thomas Forrest, First Nights at the Opera, Yale University Press, 2006, pp. 95-96. ISBN 0300115261
  • Phillips-Matz, Mary Jane, Verdi: A Biography, Oxford University Press, 1933, p. 110 and note 35, p. 794. ISBN 0193132044
  • Randel, Don Michael (ed.), The Harvard Biographical Dictionary of Music, Harvard University Press, 1996 p. 785. ISBN 0674372999
  • Sadie, Stanley (ed.) The New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians, Macmillan, 1980, Vol. 1, p. 488-489. ISBN 0333231112



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