A tale of murderous revenge overturned by sacrificial love, Korngold’s Violanta is surely one of the 20th century’s great undiscovered operas. It seems all the more remarkable for being composed when Korngold was just 17, its musical luxuriousness and intensity of feeling belying his callow age to offer a glimpse of the mature signature that later came to define the Golden Age of the Hollywood soundtrack.

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Set in 15th-century Venice to a somewhat contrived libretto by Austrian playwright Hans Müller-Einigen (author of The White Horse Inn and later responsible for Korngold’s Das Wunder der Heliane ), its ripe scenario falls somewhere between verismo and fantasy, between Tosca -era Puccini and Korngold’s own swashbuckling adventures in the Dream Factory. Musically, it straddles the same...

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