The last Vespri Italian performance was this year in Torino, the president of Italy was there. The TV presented Guido as Monteforte, which was such a nice surprise, as he is Monforte in the libretto; it seems that opera people begin to understand there was a real Guido de Monteforte. Charles Duveyrier and Eugène Scribe, the libretto authors knew for sure about the glory of our Simon and his father, as they make Guido say to his son:
“Ma non sai tu che splendida
Fama suonò di me?
È il nome mio glorioso…”
I am almost sure there was not by accident that they chose Guy as their character, although he was not even 40 years old by the time of the Vespres. They wanted to have him in their opera.
As news, I would like to tell you that even Cosi fan tutte is related to events concerning the descendants of Guy. No wonder the two male Neapolitan characters came in disguise as Albanians warriors, as in Naples, there was a time when Albanians warriors were very respected at the royal court.
Ferdinand I (June 2, 1423 – January 25, 1494), also called Don Ferrante, was the King of Naples from 1458 to 1494. In order to arrange a good future for Ferdinand, King Alfonso had him married in 1444 to a feudal heiress, Isabella of Taranto, who besides being the elder daughter of Tristan di Chiaramonte (Tristan de Clermont-Lodeve), Count of Copertino, and Catherine of Baux Orsini, was the niece and heiress presumptive of childless prince Giovanni
Antonio del Balzo Orsini of Taranto. Ferdinand’s wife was the heiress presumptive of remarkable feudal possessions in Southern Italy.Ferdinand was severely defeated by the Angevins and the rebels at the battle of Sarno in July 1460, but with the help of Alessandro Sforza and of the Albanian chief, Skanderbeg, who came to the aid of the prince whose father had aided him, he triumphed over his enemies, and by 1464 had re-established his authority in the kingdom.
Cette victoire fut en partie obtenue grâce au renfort de mercenaires albanais, les Arbëresh, qui depuis se sont installés dans le sud de l’Italie.
It is true that the Albanians were mercenaries in the Neapolitan army for many centuries after, but there are 2 more coincidences: Ferdinand and Isabella had a daughter married in Ferrara, mother of Beatrice and Isabella d’Este (as the 2 ladies from Ferrara in the opera). Plus, another daughter married the most famous king of Hungary; She lived in Viena for some time with her husband, who on 1 June 1485, at the head of 8,000 veterans, made his triumphal entry into Vienna, which he henceforth made his capital. Styria, Carinthia and Carniola were next subdued
Eleanor of Naples (June 22, 1450 – October 11, 1493). She was consort to Ercole I d’Este, Duke of Ferrara and mother to Isabella d’Este and Beatrice d’Este. The later daughter was consort to Ludovico Sforza.
Beatrice of Naples (September 14/November 16, 1457 – September 23, 1508). She was Queen consort to Matthias Corvinus of Hungary.
The specialists say that Mozart composed Cosi fan tutte at Emperor Joseph II special request. The Emperor had been very ill for an year, after becoming ill while in Timisoara!!!!!! (during war with the Turks). Knowing that he will never recover and having no children, he wanted Mozart to compose something joyful, something which will comfort him for not being ever happy in his marriages. After the premiere the Emperor died, as he would had been willing to enjoy it and then die.
The strange fact is that Joseph’s grandfather Leopold, Duke of Lorraine had as one grandmother Eleonora Gonzaga of Mantua, 7th generation descendant from Francesco II Gonzaga, son of his predecessor Francesco Gonzaga, Marquess of Mantua and Isabella d’Este.