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Lorenzo Da Ponte

Lorenzo Da Ponte, Mozart’s witty librettist, became Columbia’s first teacher of Italian; he was the first representative of cosmopolitan enlightened European culture in America.

More information about Da Ponte can be found in this New York Times article, in the book by the Academy's Executive Director, Barbara Faedda, From Da Ponte to the Casa Italiana, in the essays by Francesco Zimei and Barbara Faedda and others in the volume Un Ponte di Musica. Itinerari dell’opera italiana in America, and in the 2005 publication Lorenzo da Ponte: Opera and Enlightenment in Late 18th Century Vienna, by Herbert Lachmayer and Reinhard Eisendle. Also see coverage of the 2018 exhibition at the Italian Academy in Il Manifesto and La Voce.