The Tempo of Life: Passages and Transformations

Concert and Theatrical Performance Based on the Life and Work of Fanny Mendelssohn (1805-1847)

Piano: Adriana Mascoli

Three actors and soprano soloist

Theatrical text based on the novel

“Fanny Mendelssohn: Note a Margine”

by Adriana Mascoli and Marcella Papeschi (Manni Editori, 2006)


The novel tells the story of Fanny Mendelssohn Bartholdy, the pianist and composer who lived in Berlin in the first half of the 1800s. Based upon Mendelssohn’s letters and diaries (unpublished in Italy), the novel reconstructs her development as a woman and as a musician. Raised in a Jewish family that later converted to Christianity, Fanny received a sound education alongside her celebrated brother, Felix. She performed and composed music and organized concerts with the patronage of her husband, the painter, Wilhelm Hensel. In a cultural, historical, and social context that demanded her silence, Fanny “found her voice.” Her travels in Italy, in particular, proved to be critical in her decision to publish her music.

The program includes dialogues, readings, performances of Mendelssohn’s music for solo piano, choir, and choir and piano, and concludes with a selection from Mendelssohn’s cantata based on Goethe’s Faust for soprano soloist, women’s chorus, and piano.


Selected Performances

Como, October 12, 2002

Como, November 13, 2005 (the 200th anniversary of Fanny Mendelssohn’s birth)

Capiago Intimiano, May 5, 2007