3 Italian Opera Composers From the Same School of Music

This article is a collaborative effort, crafted and edited by a team of dedicated professionals.

Contributors: Andranick Tanguiane, Fred Lerdahl,


We take a look at three of the most famous Italian opera composers from the same school of music – Giuseppe Verdi, Giacomo Puccini, and Ruggero Leoncavallo.

Giuseppe Verdi

Verdi was one of the most popular Italian opera composers of the late 19th century. His operas such as “Rigoletto” (1851), “Il trovatore” (1853) and “La traviata” (1853) are among the most frequently performed works in the standard repertoire. Verdi also wrote several major religious works such as the “Messa per Rossini” (1868) and the unfinished “Messiah” (1874).

Giacomo Puccini

Giacomo Puccini, an Italian composer known for his operas, was born in Lucca in 1858. He studied at the Milan Conservatory, and his compositions were first performed there. His early works show the influence of Italian folk music and the Neapolitan school of opera composers. He is best known for his operas La Bohème, Tosca, and Madama Butterfly.

Carlo Menotti

Carlo Menotti (July 7, 1911 – February 1, 2007) was an Italian composer and librettist. Although he often referred to himself as an American composer, he kept his Italian citizenship. He wrote the classic Christmas opera, Amahl and the Night Visitors, as his first opera in 1951. He won a Pulitzer Prize twice: once for The Consul in 1950, and again for The Saint of Bleecker Street in 1955. He also wrote cantatas, chamber music, songs, liturgical works and scores for film and television.

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