Russian operatic soprano Anna Netrebko sings Quando men vo, a soprano aria in 3/4 time (a waltz) from act 2 of Puccini’s 1895 opera La bohème. Gala Concert of “300 years of St. Petersburg”, St. Petersburg Philharmonic Orchestra (Yuri Temirkanov & Nikolai Alekseev).
La bohème is an opera in four acts, composed by Giacomo Puccini to an Italian libretto by Luigi Illica and Giuseppe Giacosa, based on Scènes de la vie de bohème by Henri Murger.
“Quando men vo”, also known as “Musetta’s Waltz”, is a soprano aria sung by the character Musetta, in the presence of her bohemian friends, and is directed toward Marcello in order to make him jealous.
Quando men vo lyrics (Libretto)
Italian (Quando men vo)
Quando men vo soletta per la via,
la gente sosta e mira,
e la bellezza mia tutta ricerca in me,
ricerca in me
Da capo a piè.
Ed assaporo allor la bramosia
sottil che dagli occhi traspira
e dai palesi vezzi intender sa
alle occulte beltà.
Così l’effluvio del desìo tutta m’aggira,
felice mi fa!
E tu che sai, che memori e ti struggi,
da me tanto rifuggi?
le angosce tue non le vuoi dir,
non le vuoi dir, so ben,
ma ti senti morir!
English translation (When I walk)
When I walk alone in the street
People stop and stare at me
And everyone looks at my beauty,
Looks at me
From head to foot.
And then I relish the sly yearning
Which escapes from their eyes
And which is able to perceive
My most hidden beauties.
Thus the scent of desire is all around me,
And it makes me happy!
And you who know, who remember and yearn,
Do you shrink from me?
I know it very well:
You do not want to express your anguish,
I know so well that you do not want to express it
but you feel as if you are dying!