I was reading the score for Mozart’s insertion aria for his own opera Idomeneo “Non Temer Amato Bene”, K. 490. In it, Idomeneo’s son Idamante (scored for soprano; trouser role) expresses his undying love for Ilia.

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In the Allegro Moderato section, the sheet music seems to show Idamante singing two voices. What should the soprano do differently here?

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    Thank you Dom for editing my tags to something more applicable. I’m a newcomer to this website so I’ll have to get used to the ropes of things! Nov 26, 2019 at 21:40
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    – dalearn
    Nov 27, 2019 at 13:25

1 Answer 1


The notes with stems up are for singing in Italian, while the notes with the stems down are for singing in German.

Thus, in the first picture of the original posting, in Italian it would be

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... while in German you should sing

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In the second picture of the original posting, the Italian lyrics have only one syllable (“voi”) while the German lyrics have two syllables (“sel - ber”). The notes are doubled with the slur upwards, suggesting that the slur is meant for the Italian lyrics only.

  • What about this example? imgur.com/a/9YaR8sm It's from Beethoven's Ninth Symphony, 4th movement, near the solo Tenor finale. Isn't it more like an ossia?
    – George
    Nov 28, 2019 at 20:34
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    I looked into the full score (available at IMSLP), but there is no annotation regarding this. It seems to me that these are alternative ways to sing this part. Probably the lower alternative should be used if the singer can’t reach the high notes. Nov 28, 2019 at 20:51

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