Puccini nel 1900
Puccini during at the time of TOSCA (1900)

Giacomo Puccini was born in Lucca on the 22nd December 1858 from a family of musicians since five generations. After the early death of his father, he becomes organist for the Dome, he studies at the conservatoire of Lucca and then, thanks to a bursary given by the Queen Margareth from Savoy, he moves to Milan, where he attends the music school “G. Verdi”, studying with Amilcare Ponchielli. In 1883 he takes a degree in composition presenting his work “Capriccio Sinfonico”. During his stay in Milan, he lives as a young bohemian until he meets the publisher Giulio Ricordi, and he starts his career as a musician. His first operas are: Le Villi (1884) and Edgar (1889). In the meantime, he has his only son from Elvira Bonturi, Antonio. In 1891 the Puccini family goes on holiday for the Summer to Torre del Lago, an ideal place for hunting and composing. Puccini elects this place as his shelter with his famous sentence: “Torre del Lago, Gaudio supremo, paradiso, eden empireo, turris eburnea, vas spirituale, reggia….abitanti 120, 12 case…” (“Torre del Lago, great delight, empyrean Eden, turris eburnea, vas spirituale, realm, 120 inhabitants, 12 houses …”)

Here Puccini gives birth to most of his operas: Manon Lescaut (1891), Bohème (1896), Tosca (1900) Madame Butterfly (1904), The Girl from the Golden West (1910), La Rondine (1917), Il Trittico (1918). Puccini will later leave Torre del Lago only because a peak factory will be built  in the middle of the lake, destroying the environment, so that he will move to Viareggio, where he will start his last work, Turandot: this will be left incomplete because of his death on the 29th November 1924 in Brussel, after a throat operation. His remains rest in the chapel built inside the house of his beloved Torre del Lago. Torre-del-Lago-tramonto1

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