The Portrait of Giordano’s Aria NEMICO DELLA PATRIA

Read Interesting facts and hear great YouTube Videos about the famous Aria NEMICO DELLA PATRIA.



If you want to hear more about the opera Andrea Chenier, click on the link to the opera portrait


The aria – synopsis and background


Synopsis: Gérard had a duell with Chénier. Gérard was wounded but let Chénier go when he realized that he is the poet he listened to on the evening of the ball. Some months later. Gérard just learned that Chénier got arrested. He hopes that this is the opportunity to get Maddalena. Despite his remorse, he prepares the indictment against Chénier, of whose guilt he is not convinced.


This aria and scene is immediately reminiscent of the brutal and ice-cold Scarpia. It requires a baritone with a strong, dramatic voice. The aria is straightforward. Low strings put the scene into a dark mood. A high, cutting string interjection brings an uncanny drama into the gloomy mood. Deep strings and heavy brass introduce Gérard’s aria. Recitatively he lists the deeds Chénier has committed.

Nemico della patria, aria


All of them are undutiful, but his accusation is. Clear from the beginning “nemico della patria” (enemy of the fatherland). A cruel laugh is heard from his mouth.

But Gérard also has a human side. The second part is dominated by a dark, resigned mood. What has become of his ideals? He has become a murderer.

For a moment he forgets his remorse and sings about his passions of his earlier years. So the third part shows a passionate Gérard. This part starts in Andante, gains speed and culminates in a beautiful forte on “bracio” and ends with an ecstatic rallentando on “tutte le genti amar”.

The aria – the text of NEMICO DELLA PATRIA


Nemico della Patria?!
È vecchia fiaba che beatamente
ancor la beve il popolo.
scrive ancora
Nato a Costantinopoli? Straniero!
Studiò a Saint Cyr? Soldato!
Traditore! Di Dumouriez un complice!
E poeta? Sovvertitor di cuori
e di costumi!

Un dì m’era di gioia
passar fra gli odi e le vendette,
puro, innocente e forte.
Gigante mi credea …
Son sempre un servo!
Ho mutato padrone.
Un servo obbediente di violenta passione!
Ah, peggio! Uccido e tremo,
e mentre uccido io piango!

Io della Redentrice figlio,
pel primo ho udito il grido suo
pel mondo ed ho al suo il mio grido
unito… Or smarrita ho la fede
nel sognato destino?

Com’era irradiato di gloria
il mio cammino!
La coscienza nei cuor
ridestar delle genti,
raccogliere le lagrime
dei vinti e sofferenti,
fare del mondo un Pantheon,
gli uomini in dii mutare
e in un sol bacio,
e in un sol bacio e abbraccio
tutte le genti amar!


Stimmfach Character baritone / Heroic baritone

The role of Gérard is written for a character baritone. The baritone combines the dignity of the bass with the brilliance of the tenor (Rietmann). The voice of the character baritone is slightly darker than that of the lyrical baritone. The roles of the character baritone are usually sung by experienced and mature singer.



Famous interpretations of NEMICO DELLA PATRIA


First you will hear an impressiv television recording of Giuseppe Taddei’s, a great singer and excellent actor. The three parts were vocally and acting-wise designed exactly and skilfully by him. His vocal and acting stage presence in this play is unrivalled.

Nemico della patria (1)  –  Taddei


Warren has a rough and metallic voice and gives Gérard a dramatic face. Warren had an excellent height (he even reached the C). This allows Warren to give the higher passages of the third part of the aria an intensive glow.

Nemico della patria (2)  –  Warren


Hvorostovsky was a baritone with an unmistakable lyrical voice. His interpretation of this aria is somewhat more lyrical and the high notes are beautifully melancholic and musical.

Nemico della patria (3)  –  Hvorostovsky






Peter Lutz, opera-inside, the online opera guide to the Aria “NEMICO DELLA PATRIA” from the opera Andrea Chénier.




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