Volume 4 is devoted to the last years (1857-64); while age and declining health saw a waning of the composer's personal optimism, this was hardly the case artistically speaking. This last volume contains a series of glossaries listing his compositions and the musical and theatrical works he attended throughout his life, as well as a bibliography of the composer, his contemporaries, and the operatic and social milieu of the times.
Volume 3 covers a time span that preeminently represents the period in the composer's life known as "The Years of International Fame" (1850-56). Confirmed as the major figure on the operatic scene, and freed from the more onerous duties of his official position, Meyerbeer was able to enjoy his most remarkable period of stability and renown, as the detailed and absorbing diary entries reveal. These years saw the composing, rehearsing, and staging of L'Etoile du Nord (1854), and his personal supervision of major productions in London, Dresden, Stuttgart, and Vienna.
Volume 1 of the diaries, which in toto present a sustained record of Meyerbeer's personal recollections from 1812-1864, covers the Early Years and Italy (1812-26) and the Parisian Triumphs (1827-39). A register of names, maps, illustrations, musical examples, and annotations complete the critical apparatus, Illustrated.
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