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Picasso. 'Guernica' Modernism and Avant-garde movements The turn of the century brought new winds of modernity. The aesthetic sensibility of the time was marked by a different, freer attitude towards art and life.

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Zarzuela

  • Zarzuela

    Zarzuela

  
  


" This lyrical genre was born in Madrid and became the foundation for works that reflect the social reality of this city during the 18th and 19th century, depicting its streets, festivals, customs and ..."

This lyrical genre was born in Madrid and became the foundation for works that reflect the social reality of this city during the 18th and 19th century, depicting its streets, festivals, customs and personalities.

Zarzuela shared the height of its splendour in the spotlight with opera as well as prose and verse theatres in the 19th century, and cinema in the 20th century. With spaces dedicated solely for this popular show, i.e., Teatro de la Zarzuela in Madrid, and the efforts of lyrical companies and international tours, Zarzuela has spread throughout the Spanish-speaking world and has reached millions of spectators.
Zarzuela has two fundamental veins: on the one hand, the shortened form, or “chico”, of the genre. This presents only prototypical and popular characters of Madrid, and the stage is decorated to recreate the ambiance of the city in one single act. On the other hand, the large or Gran Zarzuela has a more elaborate layout in various acts that are more similar to the opera.
Pimps, thieves, nannies and policemen are some of the most common characters. Many famous titles for this genre belong to famous composers, namely “La verbena de la Paloma” by Tomás Bretón, “Agua, azucarillos y aguardiente” by Federico Chueca, “La Revoltosa” by Ruperto Chapí or “El Barberillo de Lavapiés” by Francisco Asenjo Barbieri.
Currently, numerous theatres still attract the public to the most famous Zarzuelas, a mirror of the multiple facets of Spanish life of way back when.

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