Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Musical Arts (DMA)



First Advisor

Martina Arroyo

Second Advisor

Griffin Campbell


Giuseppe Verdi's Aida has been well received by audiences since its inception. The plot of the opera centers around the relationships among Aida, her antagonist Amneris, and Radames. The two women display similar characteristics that provide not only the nucleus of their unique entities, but the themes around which the drama is constructed. The purpose of this analysis is to identify, contrast and compare points of characterization that define Aida and Amneris. These characteristics are traced from the original story by Auguste Mariette through three stages of development by Verdi: preversification, versification, and production. Chapter One begins with a brief history of the original story of Aida. It also traces the characters Aida and Amneris as presented in the Mariette Outline and discusses the similarities found as shared by them. Chapter Two presents a brief history of the characterizations as found in the Verdi/Du Locle Scenario and Act IV as written by Verdi. Particular attention is given to the order of the sections of this Scenario. Chapter Three illustrates the characters Aida and Amneris as outlined in the libretto of Aida. A brief history of the libretto is presented, followed by an analysis of the similar characteristics of Aida and Amneris. Chapter Four offers the similar points of characterization of Aida and Amneris as outlined in the Production Book by Ricordi, a book that was prepared from the La Scala premiere of the opera. Highlighted in the brief history of the Production Book is the soprano Teresa Stolz, the Aida of the La Scala production. An appendix concludes this monograph. It contains new and/or more detailed dramatic directions derived through this research.