Giuseppe Fortunino Francesco Verdi was born in Roncole, Italy, October 9th or 10th, 1813. His best known works include Il Trovatore, La Traviata, Aida, Otello, and Rigoletto (particularly "La donna e mobile"). His last name is actually an acronym for the king of Italy at that time (Vittorio Emanuele Re D'Italia), and he became a symbol of Italian patriotism. He died in Milan on the 27th of January, 1901.

Giuseppe Verdi is perhaps the most important and influential composer from the 19th century. He studied for Vincenzo Lavigna in Milano, and in 1839 his first opera, Oberto, was performed at La Scala. His Macbeth in 1847, after Shakespeare's play, gave him an international reputation. 1850-1853 he produced three operas that is still an important part of the international opera repertoire.

In 1861, after years of great productivity, he became a member of the Italian parliament and didn't produce the same quantity of music as before. Nevertheless, he created the important Aida for the opening of the Suez canal, and Otello and Falstaff after Shakespeare.

The following are his most famous operas.

Oberto (1839)
Nabucco, "Nebukadnesar" (1842)
I Lombardi alla prima Crociata (1843)
Ernani (1844)
I due Foscari (1844)
Giovanna d'Arco (1845)
Alzira (1845)
Attila (1846)
Macbeth (1847)
I Masnadieri (1847)
Il Corsaro (1848)
Luisa Miller (1849)
Stiffelio (1850, 1857 re-worked into Aroldo)
Rigoletto (1851)
Il Trovatore – The Troubadour (1853)
La Traviata (1853)
Les Vêpres siciliennes – The Sicilian Vespers (1855)
Simon Boccanegra (1857)
Un Ballo in maschera (1859)
La Forza del destino (1862)
Don Carlos (1867)
Aida (1871)
Otello (1887)
Falstaff (1893)

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