This 2004 Companion is a collection of specially commissioned essays on one of the most influential opera composers in the repertoire. The volume is divided into four parts, each exploring an important element of Rossini's life, his world, and his works: biography and reception; words and music; representative operas; and performance. Within these sections accessible chapters, written by a team of specialists, examine Rossini's life and career; the reception of his music in the nineteenth century and today; the librettos and their authors; the dramaturgy of the operas; and Rossini's non-operatic works. Additional chapters centre on key individual operas chosen for their historical importance or position in the present repertoire, and include Tancredi, Il barbiere di Siviglia, Semiramide, and Guillaume Tell. The last section, Performance, focuses on the history of Rossini's operas from the viewpoint of singing and staging, as well as the influence of editorial work on contemporary performance practice.