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Azione teatrale (English theatrical action, plural azioni teatrali) is a genre of opera, popular in Italy in the late 17th and 18th centuries. It is also sometimes referred to as azione scenica, componimento dramatico or componimento da camera.

An azione teatrale was typically a one-act opera, or musical play, presented in a small, usually private or aristocratic theatre. As such it was an early form of chamber opera. The work was often historical or mythological in character. A similar, but larger scale work was called a festa teatrale.

Examples of the genre are Gluck's Le cinesi (1754), Mozart's Il sogno di Scipione (1772) and Haydn's L'isola disabitata (1779). Gluck's Orfeo ed Euridice (1762) also belongs to this genre, though in many ways it is atypical.


  • The Oxford Dictionary of Opera, by John Warrack and Ewan West (1992), 782 pages, ISBN 0-19-869164-5

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