Otello is Verdi’s penultimate opera. After going into retirement after the success of his opera, Aida, Verdi was pulling and prodded in the attempt to get him to come out of retirement to write another piece. His publisher, Giulio Ricordi, tried for ten years to get him to even revise some of his former works, let alone write a new work. Arrigo Boito came on board to assist Verdi to revise Simon Boccanegra which helped Verdi get on board with the idea of a collaboration with Boito on a new piece. Boito had already written the libretto for Otello based on Shakepeare’s play, Othello, and he and

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