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Lorenzo Da Ponte
Lorenzo Da Ponte was born in Ceneda (now Vittorio Veneto) in 1749, under the name of Emanuele Conegliano, from a wealthy family of Jewish ancestry. In 1763, at 14 years old, He change his name with the name of the Bishop who baptized him, Lorenzo Da Ponte. 

In 1773, After being ordained priest, reaches Venice where he taught, but is overwhelmed by the libertine life and daring until being banned by the Venetian Republic in 1779. From 1781 is in Vienna as court poet of Emperor Joseph II and started working with W.A. Mozart.

Date from that period his three masterpieces: the marriage of Figaro (1786), Don Giovanni (1787) and Così fan tutte (1790). Turned away from Vienna, he moved to London and then New York, where he died in 1838. "His life as the character was full of contrasts and paradoxes, and the same can be said of the idea that you are made of this figure, so elusive, gifted and charming, those who knew him or wrote about him. In his long life he was in Venice, during the last years of the Republic; then in Vienna of Emperor Joseph II, brilliant Centre of European culture; then in London of George III, elegant and very active and finally in the New World, the land of forgotten pioneers, they didn't have much time for the refinement of European civilisation. In all these countries, each so different from the other, he arrived fugitive and penniless, but wherever he builts a new life. …Everywhere he went, Da Ponte left traces of himself "

(From “Lorenzo Da Ponte:la vita e i tempi del librettista di Mozart” of Sheila Hodges – Vittorio Veneto H. Kellermann Editore, 1992)


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