Opera Scotland

Uccellatrice L'uccellatrice; The Bird Catcher


Niccolò Jommelli (born Aversa, nr Naples, 10 September 1714; died Naples, 25 August 1774)







First Performance: Venice (Teatro San Samuele), 6 May 1750.

First Performance in UK: to be confirmed (1763).

First Performance in Scotland: Edinburgh (Canongate Theatre), 20 July 1763.

Scottish Opera première: N/A.



Jommelli was the leading Italian composer of the mid-eighteenth century. He studied in Naples and achieved rapid success as a composer both of comic and serious operas. He worked for extensive periods in Rome and Venice before going to Vienna in 1749, where he collaborated with the librettist Metastasio. He then settled in Stuttgart for twenty years, introducing many new ideas in orchestral and operatic performances. He visited London in 1754. He returned to live in Naples a few years before his death.

L'uccellatrice follows in the tradition of Pergolesi's La serva padrona, being a comic Intermezzo in two scenes, intended for performance during the intervals of a three act serious work.



Don Narciso (baritone)

Mergellina, a bird catcher (soprano)

Lesbino (silent)


Plot Summary

Mergellina is at work in the woods catching birds. Don Narciso, out hunting, meets her and mistakes her for some form of sylvan goddess. He immediately falls in love. Mergellina teases him for his folly, though not enough to put him off.

The Cast

Don Narciso
 a bird catcher

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