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October 10

Giuseppe Verdi

During the 19th century, Italy’s rising nationalism and unification coincided with Verdi’s career, a matter which was of great personal importance to the composer.

Photo by Giovanni Boldini/The Bridgeman Art Gallery/Getty

1813: Viva Verdi
Giuseppe Verdi is born in Le Roncole, Italy
Don't think you know any opera? Bet you do. Several pieces by Giuseppe Verdi have taken such deep root in worldwide arts culture that you've probably heard them—and could even hum them with a little effort. “La donna e mobile,” written by this Italian Romantic composer, is one such recognizable piece from his opera Rigoletto, based on a play by Victor Hugo.

Verdi broke some standard “rules” of opera; for example, his Macbeth was the first Italian opera that did not include a love story, and is considered a truly original piece for that reason. Verdi’s incredible range of operatic works can be heard in La Traviata, Aida, Il Trovatore, and Falstaff. Think opera. Think Verdi.
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