The Operas of Verdi

Jay Rosenblatt
Mondays 10AM - 12PM
September 25, October 2, 9, 16, 23, 30, 2023
Watch the video to learn more about this course

The Operas of Verdi

Fall 2023
In Session
10AM - 12PM
September 25, October 2, 9, 16, 23, 30, 2023

Course Format: 



Main Campus



The year 2023 commemorates the 210th anniversary of the birth of Giuseppe Verdi (1813–1901), and in this course, we consider his achievements as an opera composer. An overview of Verdi's life and career takes up the initial class session, including the musical influence on Verdi's earliest works by his most important predecessors (Rossini, Bellini, and Donizetti). The following sessions discuss each of Verdi's operas in chronological order, with the final session devoted to Verdi's last two operas, "Otello" and "Falstaff," delving deeply into the music as well as the intimate relationship these works have with the plays of Shakespeare on which they are based. In addition to PowerPoint presentations, excerpts from the operas will be presented on recordings and videos.

Please Note: This course is an updated version of the same course offered by Professor Rosenblatt in Fall 2013.

Required Reading: 

  • Julian Budden, Verdi, 3rd ed. (Oxford: Oxford University Press 2008; also available as a Kindle edition). 

Recommended Reading: 

  • Julian Budden, The Operas of Verdi, rev. ed., 3 vols. (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1992).
  • Mary Jane Phillips-Matz, Verdi: A Biography (New York: Oxford University Press, 1993).
  • Frank Walker, The Man Verdi (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1982). 

Meet Your Professor

Associate Professor
School of Music

JAY ROSENBLATT earned his B.A. in Piano Performance and M.A. in Musicology from UCLA and a Ph.D. from the University of Chicago, also in Musicology. He joined the School of Music at the University of Arizona in 1995. For the past twenty-eight years, he has taught survey courses (Classical and Romantic music), courses on opera, and seminars on individual composers such as Liszt and Mozart. Since 2012, he has taught eight courses in the Humanities Seminars.


  • All classes will be delivered on-campus and online via live video streaming. Students will enroll in their preferred format during registration.
  • On-Campus classes will be held in the Rubel Room at the University of Arizona's Poetry Center (1508 E Helen St, Tucson, AZ 85721). Enrollment for in-person classes is limited and available on a first-come, first-served basis. All students enrolled to attend in person also have complete online access and may choose to attend one or all class sessions remotely if desired.
  • Online students may attend all classes via live video streaming and will be able to participate in all course Q&A sessions with the professor in real-time. A high-speed internet connection and a device capable of running Zoom are required to connect. Online access will be password protected and only available to enrolled students.
  • Class Recordings - All HSP classes are recorded and available for every enrolled student to watch for the duration of the course and one month after the last class session. This option is offered to aid students who cannot attend the live class times but desire to enroll and participate asynchronously. We hope this option also aids students who are traveling or have a necessary appointment that conflicts with a class session to stay connected and engaged with the course material.


Poetry Center
Dorothy Rubel Room
1508 E Helen
Tucson, AZ 85721
United States
Located on the SE corner of Helen Street and Vine Avenue, one block north of Speedway and three blocks west of Campbell Ave.

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