Tablet - Portrait

Tablet - Landscape


Manuel de Falla

Falla composed this opera on a text by Carlos Fernández Shaw. The "short life" of the title belongs to a young, love-struck Gypsy girl named Salud, who is hopelessly in love with Paco, a cad who strings her along although he is betrothed to a rich girl of his own station in life. Salud establishes the truth only on the night of their wedding, when she looks into her rival's family courtyard. She then confronts her faithless lover, bitterly accusing him. When he further betrays her by insisting that she is lying, she falls dead at his feet as her family curses him.

The opera is full of colorful Spanish music, including two well-known and often-excerpted Spanish Dances. In addition, the scene around Salud's house involves work songs for a group of offstage blacksmiths, and the wedding party scene is full of flamenco music.

-- Joseph Stevenson, All Music Guide (Excerpt)