This article introduces twelve new Verdi letters and other operatic and musical theater sources in the Yale Collection of Historical Sound Recordings. The materials hail from the French baritone Victor Maurel (1848-1923), Verdi's first Iago and first Falstaff, and from his second wife, the musical theater librettist and screenwriter Frederique Rosine de Gresac (1866/7-1943). The letters and other sources constitute an important resource for not only nineteenth-century opera and operatic performance but also the early American musical, film studies, the history of women, even the history of celebrity. The Verdi letters concern Maurel's creation of the role of Falstaff and include a intriguing debate about preparing for the role and singing generally.

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