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Guess the Tune – Opera Puzzler

November 29, 2009
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Here are two tunes from an opera in my recent listening:

Can you recognize the tunes? Which opera is it? Wait, if you think you know the answers, you might want to think twice after listening to these two:

Just give you some hint. The last two tunes (b) are from a different opera, as you may know it by heart, Mozart’s “Die Zauberflote” (The Magic Flute).

But that’s not the opera for the first two tunes (a), even though they sound familiar (try to compare 1a vs 1b and 2a and 2b). So, what is it?

The answer is ..

These two tunes are from Rossini’s L’Italiana in Algeri (The Italian Girl in Algiers; below is from a live recordng by Teresa Berganza, Luigi Alva and the conductor Silvio Varviso).

Tune 1&2 b is take from the opening of this famous aria.

When I first listened to Rossini’s L’Italiana in Algeri yesterday, I immediately recognized the similarity between these two. Even though it’s only just for few notes. But they do sound pretty close, don’t they?😉

Maybe when Rossini was composing L’Italiana in Algeri, where introduces “Pappataci”* in Act II, he couldn’t help having Papagano’s tune in mind. Well, that’s just my wild guess.

* From Wiki’s Synopsis: “Lindoro tells Mustafà that Isabella will declare him her adored ‘pappataci’ [literally a ‘silent eater’: a man unable to resist the opposite sex]. This, as Lindoro explains, is an Italian custom and a great honour, as the ‘pappataci’ enjoy an idyllic life dedicated to eating, drinking and sleeping.”

2 Comments leave one →
  1. January 2, 2010 12:03 am

    Hi, This is Ingemar Berg from Sweden. I am interested in making a similar quiz on my blog. You are using Box.net – that seems OK. I just have one technical question.
    How do you make these short clips. If I am uploading a music file from my computer, I will get the whole tune.

    Best wishes,
    Ingemar

    • January 2, 2010 8:15 am

      Hello, Ingemar:

      I use Audacity to cut the session of the tune. It doesn’t come with MP3 encoder, so you need to get the encoder file saved in some folder and tell Audacity where it is. You will see the instruction in the download page.

      If I have several files to compare, I also use MP3Gain to make all in the same target volume. Audacity of course can do that. It is just MP3Gain is more convenient when I only want to change the volume.

      Hope this help. Happy New Year.🙂

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