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Norma IT - 1831 2*
Vincenzo Bellini 1801 - 1835 IT 2*
Libretto by Felice Romani
First performance at Milan, Teatro alla Scala on 26 December 1831
Synopsis - Roles - Arias
Italian libretto - German translation - English translation - Spanish translation - Hungarian translation
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Background Facts - Top
  • Bellini's most well-known opera, paradigm of Romantic operas. The final act of this work is often noted for the originality of its orchestration.
  • The title role in this opera by Bellini is generally considered one of the most difficult in the soprano repertoire. It calls for tremendous vocal control of range, flexibility, and dynamics.
  • The most famous interpretation of the title role of this Bellini opera in the postwar period, and arguably of the 20th Century, was Maria Callas, with 89 stage performances.
Synopsis - Top
Act 1
A secret love unites the seeress Norma with Pollione, the Roman proconsul, by whom she has borne two children. But Pollione has grown tired of the aging druidess and has fallen in love with Adalgisa, a young temple virgin. Despite Adalgisa's piety and virtue, she agrees to flee to Rome with Pollione. Adalgisa innocently tells Norma of her love, and Norma curses Pollione for his treachery.

Act 2
Norma is about to kill her children, but her love for her children finally confides them to the care of Adalgisa. When Pollione comes to take Adalgisa from the temple, Norma denounces him and he is seized by the Druids, after having refused to give up Adalgisa. Norma proclaims herself equally guilty with him. The pyre is lighted, and ascending it, Norma dies with her lover.
Roles - Top
NormaSopranoF-H Daughter of Oroveso, High-priestess of the Celts
AdalgisaSopranoF-H Priestess in the grove of the Irminsul statue
PollioneTenorM-M Roman proconsul in Gaul
OrovesoBassM-VL Chief of the Druids
ClotildeSopranoF-H Norma’s friend
FlavioTenorM-M Pollione’s companion
Arias - Top
Act 1: Sinfonia
Ite sul colle / Dell'aura tua profetica
Meco all'altar di Venere
Me protegge, me difende
Casta diva 3*
Ah! bello a me ritorna
Sgombra è la sacra selva
Va crudele, al dio spietato / E tu pure, ah, tu non sai
Sola, furtiva al tempio
Oh, non tremare o perfido
Oh! di qual sei tu vittima
Act 2: Dormono entrambi! / Teneri figli
Deh, con te, con te li prendi / Mira, o Norma
Guerra, guerra! Le galliche selve
In mia man alfin tu sei
Deh! non volerli vittime, finale