Madame Butterfly

Versions

Puccini wrote five versions of the opera. The original two-act version,[7] which was presented at the world premiere at La Scala on 17 February 1904, was withdrawn after the disastrous premiere. Puccini then substantially rewrote it, this time in three acts. This second version[8] was performed on 28 May 1904 in Brescia, where it was a great success, with Solomiya Krushelnytska as Cio-Cio-san. It was this second version that premiered in the United States in 1906, first in Washington, D.C., in October, and then in New York in November, performed by Henry Savage's New English Opera Company (so named because it performed in English-language translations).

In 1906, Puccini wrote a third version,[9] which was performed at the Metropolitan Opera in New York. In 1907, Puccini made several changes in the orchestral and vocal scores, and this became the fourth version,[10] which was performed in Paris.

In 1907, Puccini made his final revisions to the opera in a fifth version,[11][12] which has become known as the "Standard Version" and is the one which is most often performed around the world. However, the original 1904 version is occasionally performed, such as for the opening of La Scala's season on 7 December 2016, with Riccardo Chailly conducting.[13]


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