Verdi in his childhood did not show any spark of his talent and his future to become one of Italy’s musical giants. He was seven when he picked up on the force of music: rumor has it while he was serving in a mass in Le Roncole, where he was born, it was the first time he heard organ music. It was so overwhelming for him that he had not heard the priest’s third admonition – in his anxiety the priest pushed him so strongly that the poor boy fallen down on the stairs of the altar and fainted. When he woke up instead of complaining he began with his wish: learning music.
He was not thinking about himself more, than a simple „music maker”; he wanted people interested in his music and not in his life. He became successful early, he wrote his first opera at the age of 26, but his third opera, the Nabucco (1842) bring him the real fame.
Five years later he wrote Macbeth – he almost broke up with the Italian opera’s usual statements for example the bel canto. Through the rehearsals the director gave out the main role to Eugenia Tadolini, whom Verdi appreciated highly, but he did not find her appropriate to the role – according to his letter to the director: „Tadolini has good attendance and nice; I want Lady Macbeth bad poise and ugly. Tadolini has wonderful, elegant, clear and strong voice, but I want Lady Macbeth inelegant, rough and matt voice.”
Soon, Verdi in his so called mature period wrote three operas that are familiar and remarkably popular nowadays also: Rigoletto (1851), Il trovatore (1853) and Traviata (1853). These ones are the 19th century’s Italian opera-literature’s significantly important pieces that the audience adored. The popularity of them was so high that one season in the Parisian Italian Opera-house from 87 performances 54 was Verdi’s those three opera. Verdi was also famous: according to his friend, who visited him in Moncalieri, Verdi saw him in a room, which was a living room, a workroom and a bedroom together (however he rented a whole villa). „There are two other rooms, but these ones are full of with things I rented.” Verdi opened the rooms and his friend saw vast of barrel-organs and musical boxes. „When I arrived, these innumerable machines played all the time Rigoletto, Il trovatore and other operas of mine. It was so disturbing that I rented all of them for this season. It costed 1000 Franks, but it worthed: I finally have peace now.”
Verdi started to write more complex and monumental operas expending more time for that. For the rehearsals of I vespri siciliani (1855) he travelled to Paris (from where this opera was ordered) to check the preparations. The orchestra did not come to a subsequently announced rehearsal and the conductor said for the master: „They have other things to do.” He answered: „What other things they have to do as their duty?” He took his hat and left Paris. The opera’s premier was successful.
Verdi, who became one of the most significant and famous opera-composers in Europe still in his lifetime, wrote his Aida in 1871 to the celebration of the opening of Suez Canal. His compatriot travelled to Milan to see Aida because he heard it is fantastic – finally he did not like the opera. He wanted to explain his frustration and wrote a letter to the composer in which he asserted Verdi to give his money back: the price of the railway ticket (there and back), the opera ticket and the dinner at the railway station. In Verdi’s lively answer he gave back the price of the tickets except the dinner’ cost: „You had to have a dish anyway.”
In his life – according to his own confession – he remained a musical worker. Verdi was adored by his homeland, Italy. This sentence is attested by a quote from Sir George Henschel baritone singer, founder conductor of Boston Symphony Orchestra. „Verdi honored me, when he asked me to send him my songs and if I want my other pieces, too. For my question about his address his answer was typical. Without any arrogance and roistering he said: It is enough to write: Maestro Verdi, Italia.”