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Temistocle Solera

Librettist

Biography

Italian librettist and composer Temistocle Solera (1815–78) is best known for his librettos for Verdi, the most famous of which is Nabucco.

Solera was born in Ferrara. He was educated in Vienna before running away to join a circus, and eventually completed his studies in Milan and Pavia. He published some books of verse before working on his first operatic project in 1839, adapting Antonio Piazza’s libretto Oberto conte di San Bonifacio for Verdi. He had his first great success with Nabucco (1842) and went on to write for Verdi Il Lombardi alla prima crociata (1843), Giovanna d’Arco (1845) and Attila (1846), the last of which was completed by Francesco Maria Piave when Solera moved to Madrid to work as director of productions there.

Solera set several of his librettos himself, including Ildegonda (1840), Il contadino d’Agliate (1841), Genio e sventura (1843) and La Hermana de Pelayo (1853). Further compositions include the cantata La melodia and sacred music, chamber music and songs.

News and features

Opera Essentials: Verdi's <em>Nabucco</em>

Opera Essentials: Verdi's Nabucco

2 June 2016

Our quick introduction to Verdi’s first great success, home to the famous ‘Va pensiero’ chorus.

Verdi unpacked: A guide to the master of Italian opera

Verdi unpacked: A guide to the master of Italian opera

21 May 2015

The composer of La traviata, Macbeth and Otello consolidated and innovated the opera of his time.

Accessible Arias: 'Va pensiero' from Nabucco

Accessible Arias: 'Va pensiero' from Nabucco

11 February 2013

A look at Verdi's famous Chorus of the Hebrew Slaves, Italy's unofficial national anthem.