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Rossini, Gioacchino (1792-1868)


Ciro in Babilonia, Opera

Aria “Vorrei veder”

Soprano, fagotto solo, orchestra

Cadenza introduction to aria.


Act 1 pp 233-236.

Sächsische Landesbibliothek - Staats- und Universitätsbibliothek

Dresden   D-Dl Mus.4804-F-518

CD Naxos 8.660203-04 Fogliani, CD 1, track 9.



Il Signor Bruschino, Opera

Recit and Aria #5 Sofia

“Ah voi condur volete ala disperazione”

Soprano, english horn or ?? bassoon, orchestra.

Fondazione Rossini Pesaro 1986, pp 236-265.

(The provenance of the obbligato bassoon, on the CD below, rather than customary

english horn, is unknown. Discussed in introduction to the published edition).

CD Pavane ADW 7158 Warsaw Chamber Opera, track 10.

See review Opera Quarterly 1993, 9: 163-5.


The bassoon setting is possibly based on a misunderstanding of the notation of early

english horn parts, which in Italy were often written in bass clef, without implying that

a bass register was intended - see score of William Tell overture, below.

A similar uncertainty arises with the virtuoso obbligato for english horn in the Gratias agimus tibi of Rossini’s Messa di Gloria (CD Hänssler classic 98.359), which some writers have interpreted as being possibly for bassoon (Gossett P. 1968, The Musical Quarterly. 54:316-340.)


Vienna Symphonic Library - Woodwind notation:


“English horn parts were written in bass clef, sounding an octave higher than written, in Italy from the late 18th to the middle of the 19th century, e.g., in Rossini’s William Tell Overture, so that the part could be read by a bassoonist, who played it. The bassoonist could finger the written notes as if he were playing the bassoon and the right pitches would sound on the English horn.”




Nineteenth-century score of William Tell overture with english horn notated in bass clef.