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The World's Greatest Music
Lorenzo Da Ponte (1749–1838) wrote the words for 28 operas by 11 composers, including three of Mozart's greatest - Don Giovanni, The Marriage of Figaro and Così fan tutte. But this librettist's own life was scandalous enough to make an opera in its own right.
He gained an appointment as the first professor of Italian literature at Columbia College. He was the first Roman Catholic priest to be appointed to the faculty, and also the first to have been born a Jew! In New York he introduced opera and produced a performance of 'Don Giovanni'. He also introduced Rossini's music to Americans, through a concert tour with his niece Giulia Da Ponte.
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