Opera, the Transformation of Naples, the Marquis del Carpio, and Alessandro Scarlatti


ACLS Fellowship Program




This project explains and documents how the intervention of the marquis del Carpio (Viceroy of Naples 1683-7) and his production team accelerated the integration of opera into public life and the metamorphosis of Naples into a center for opera and bel canto. Opera was among many facets of public life that Carpio reformed. He introduced a new system of opera financing, raised artistic quality, and produced a series of operas that were musically and visually innovative. He transformed Naples from an operatic backwater that hosted mostly revivals by traveling troupes into a sophisticated locus of production. Carpio has been studied as an art patron and voracious collector, but musicologists have previously under estimated his pivotal importance in the history of opera in Italy.