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Shepherd


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1 (Wagner: Tristan und Isolde). Ten. Appears in Act 3, piping a beautiful refrain. He keeps watch for signs of the ship bringing Isolde back to Tristan. Created (1865) by Herr Simons.

2 (Szymanowski: King Roger). Ten. Preaches the philosophy of beauty and pleasure as a way of life. The Queen is entranced by him and follows him to a Dionysian existence. Only the King is able to resist him. Created (1926) by Adam Dobosz.

3 (Puccini: Tosca). Treble/mez. On the roof of Castel Sant’ Angelo, just before dawn, Cavaradossi awaits execution. The bells of the local sheep can be heard, and a song sung by a shepherd boy (sung usually by a boy soprano or a mez.). Aria: Io de’ sospiri (‘I give you sighs’). Cecilia Bartoli, at the age of nine, made her début in this role.

4 (Wagner: Tannhäuser). Sop. Travesti role. He sings of the coming of spring. As the pilgrims pass on their way to Rome, he falls to his knees in prayer. Aria: Frau Holda kam aus dem Berg hervor (‘Dame Holda came near from the hill’—Holda was the goddess of spring). Creator (1845) unknown.

Subjects: Opera.


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