Reference Entry

Long, John Luther

Julian Budden

in Oxford Music Online

Published in print December 1992 |
Published online January 2002 | e-ISBN: 9781561592630 | DOI:

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(b Hanover, pa , Jan 1, 1861; d Clifton Springs, ny , Oct 31, 1927). American writer. In 1897 his story Madame Butterfly appeared in the Century Magazine. Based partly on a true incident told him by his sister, Mrs Irwin Corell, wife of a missionary at Nagasaki, and partly on Pierre Loti’s popular ‘conte’ Madame Chrysanthème, it created such a sensation that two famous American actresses, Maude Adams and Julia Marlowe, at once sought his permission to turn it into a play. This, however, was eventually granted to the playwright David Belasco, whose one-act Madame Butterfly, written with Long’s assistance, so impressed Puccini when he saw it in London in 1900 that he determined to make a full-length operatic version. Giuseppe Giacosa even published an Italian translation of the original story in La lettura to coincide with the première of Madama Butterfly in February 1904. Long collaborated with Belasco in five further plays, the most successful of which, ...

Reference Entry.  219 words. 

Subjects: Opera ; Romantic Music

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