According to numerous anecdotes, Gioachino Rossini was not very vain when it came to his operas: ‘If you know one of my overtures, you know them all’ is only one bon mot attributed to him. Most of his operas were composed under pressure and Rossini didn’t hesitate to reuse parts of his older works for new commissions. He composed IL BARBIERE DI SEVIGLIA, his best-known opera, in just 26 days, recycling for the overture material from two older works. This way, he created 39 operas within twenty years before giving up writing opera altogether. He wrote his last opera, GUILLAUME TELL, a full 40 years before he died. Today, 200 years after their composition, his operas – LA CENERENTOLA, IL BARBIERE DI SEVIGLIA, L'ITALIANA IN ALGERI and GUILLAUME TELL – continue to shape our idea of what opera is. Rossini remains opera’s master of comedy.