La dannazione di Faust : leggenda drammatica in quattro parti / adattamento scenico di Raoul Gunsburg ; versione italiana di Ettore Gentili ; musica di Ettore Berlioz (1902)
Raoul Samuel Gunsbourg (born January 6, 1860 in Bucharest - died May 31, 1955 in Monte Carlo) was a Jewish-Romania-born opera director, impresario, composer and writer. Gunsbourg is best known for being the longest-serving director of the Opéra de Monte-Carlo, where his career spanned almost six decades.Raoul Gunsbourg acquired his musical education and its comprehensive knowledge in language and literature as a self-taught person. He attended Medical School in Bucharest which he finished in 1875. In 1877-78 he served as a medic in the Russian army during the Russian-Turkish war. In 1881-83 he created and managed the Gunsbourg's French Opera Stage in Moscow and St. Petersburg. In Moscow Gunsbourg met German composer Richard Wagner. After returning to France, Gunsbourg directed the Grand Théâtre de Lille during the 1888/89 season and the Opéra de Nice in 1889-91.In 1892, on recommendation by czar Alexander III of Russia, Gunsbourg was invited by Princess Alice, an American wife of Albert I, Prince of Monaco, to serve as the director of the Opéra de Monte-Carlo. Empowered by Princess Alice's encouragement and support, Gunsbourg transformed the Opéra de Monte-Carlo into a world-class cultural venue. He was the first opera director to stage Berlioz's La damnation de Faust, which was considered at that time so far more as an oratorio than opera, in his theatre on February 18, 1893.Gunsbourg's work in Monte Carlo was briefly interrupted during World War II. Assisted by the members of the French Resistance, Gunsbourg fled to nearby Switzerland, nearly escaping the arrest and possible execution by the Nazis who occupied Monaco in 1943 and began the deportation of the Jewish population. After the war was over, Gunsbourg returned to Monaco where he continued directing the Opéra de Monte-Carlo until 1951.
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