A turning point in opera. A presentation of Giacomo Puccini’s famous comic opera, Gianni Schicchi. Puccini was among many composers of the 19th century who developed new ways to entertain and connect with wider audiences, by creating works that utilized operatic romanticism, on-stage antics, and a newly developed lyrical style of the time, known as bell canto. The work of Puccini and others from this period influenced generations of musicians and composers who followed.


  • THE TURNING POINT: Giacomo Puccini came up with the novel idea of writing short, one-act operas, that could be performed in groups, or separately. This is a major step away from previous traditions of long, multi-act staged works.
  • The world premiere of Gianni Schicchi took place at the Metropolitan Opera in New York in 1918, and became an immediate hit with critics and audience.
  • Puccini was a fifth-generation musician and composer in his family. His father, Michele (1813–1864) was a conductor, organist and composer of religious music, and his grandfather Domenico (1772–1815) wrote orchestral and piano music. His great grandfather Antonio (1747–1832) and great, great grandfather Giacomo (1712–1781) were noted Italian musicians, as well.
  • O mio babbino caro (Oh my dear Papa), a soprano aria from Gianni Schicchi, is considered not only one of the best of Puccini’s arias, but one of the most famous operatic arias of all time.
  • Gianni Schicchi is the only opera where “the main character” does not sing a single note and does not utter a single word!