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  • Composer of the Month Giuseppe Verdi Happy birthday, Giuseppe Verdi! Viva V.E.R.D.I  – “Viva Vittorio Emanuele Re D'Italia!” was the rallying…
  • Composer of the Month Giuseppe Verdi Happy birthday, Giuseppe Verdi! Viva V.E.R.D.I  – “Viva Vittorio Emanuele Re D'Italia!” was the rallying…

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Happy birthday, Giuseppe Verdi!

Viva V.E.R.D.I  – “Viva Vittorio Emanuele Re D'Italia!” was the rallying cry of the Italian “Risorgimento,” (“Resurgence” or “Rising Again”) the 19th century movement for Italian unification that culminated in the establishment of the Kingdom of Italy in 1861 and Victor Emanuele II as king of Italy. 

How does the great operatic genius Giuseppe Verdi, born on Oct. 19, 1813, fit in to this?  A number of Italian opera composers were slyly inserting plot elements into their works that resonated with the “Risorgimenti.”  But, it was Verdi who was their best ally.

It wasn’t much of a stretch for Italians, whose country had been taken over by Austria, to connect with the words of “Va Pensiero,” especially with lines such as “O my country, so lovely and so lost.”  

Spreading throughout Italy, the slogan “Viva VERDI” expressed the people’s love for their favorite composer, Giuseppe Verdi, but it also had the secret meaning of “Viva Victor Emanuele, King of Italy.”  Even today, the chorus “Va Pensiero” is considered the unofficial national anthem of Italy.

 

This month’s classical composer profile was written by Peter Hall, Classical 94.5 WNED program host.

 

Kevin Whately and Laurence Fox return for a seventh season of the beloved Inspector Lewis series. Hathaway has been promoted to inspector after an extended break from the force, and Lewis is enjoying retired life until he's asked to team up with his old colleague again. With their partnership renewed under altered circumstances, the duo continues to solve crime in the seemingly perfect academic haven of Oxford. Inspector Lewis airs Sundays, October 5, 12 & 19 on WNED-TV.

Joanna Vanderham (Blackwood) and Emun Elliott (Prometheus) return as the fairy-tale couple who found true love at a glamorous Victorian-era department store. The Paradise returns for a second season of romance and drama Sundays, September 28 - November 16 at 8 p.m. on WNED-TV. 

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