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Blind Parts – Order The Spare Parts You Need

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Find the Blind Parts & Accessories You Need Today

Even the best roller blinds are no use when you don’t have the right hardware! That’s why Quickfit makes sure that all of our blinds ship with the necessary hardware and parts needed to get your new blinds hung perfectly in your windows. We’ll include the hardware with both our custom-made and ready-made roller blinds. We even give you your choice of hardware colors so you get something that’s perfectly suited to the decor in your home, office, or investment property. You’ll find our hardware is the same high-quality as our roller blind material, so you’ll be able to depend on it year after year to faithfully roll your blinds up and down as much as you need.

We Have Spare Parts For Those Moments When Accidents Happen

While many of our customers enjoy their roller blinds from Quickfit for years without issue with the hardware, we’ve been in this business long enough to know that accidents happen.

When they do, we have the spare parts that you need to replace your hardware and get your roller blinds working flawlessly again. No need to worry about the cost of replacing your blinds. One quick visit to our online store will help you find everything that you need so you can replace the hardware in just a matter of minutes. Being able to buy the blind parts that you need can help avoid the cost of replacing your blinds entirely!

Place an Order Online With Us Today

Whether you are shopping for ready-made blinds, made-to-measure blinds, or the spare parts to make them all work, you can trust Quickfit to have everything that you need. If you have any questions about the parts or blinds that you need, just get in touch with our team. We’ll make sure you have all of the answers that you need before you place an order. Give us a call or contact us online so we can help you get the right blinds and parts for every window in your home or office!

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How To Clean Your Indoor Blinds – Your Guide To Cleaning Perfection

If you take pride in a clean home, getting your blinds clean and beautiful can be a source of frustration. Blinds can gather dust, and the little nooks and crannies can make it a little harder to achieve perfectly clean blinds. Fortunately, Spotlight has created a comprehensive guide to solve all your blind-cleaning problems.

What Is The General Method For Cleaning Blinds?

While your blinds may be a cause of cleaning frustration, getting them sparkling clean is easier than you might think. In fact, the only thing you need to clean your blinds properly is some water, vinegar and a microfibre cloth.

To prepare your cleaning solution, use one part vinegar and one part water. Dip your microfibre cloth into the bowl and wring it out until damp. Then, use the cloth to wipe down each of the slats. Please ensure you hold the bottom of each slat as you clean it.

What Is The Best Method To Clean Indoor Roller Blinds?

The method to clean roller blinds is quite similar to the previously mentioned cleaning method. However, instead of vinegar and water, we would suggest a mixture of dishwashing liquid and lukewarm water. Then, dip the microfibre cloth in the water and wring it out, leaving it slightly damp.

To clean your roller blinds, it is recommended to start at the bottom and do the cleaning process in sections. Clean in an upward motion until every section is clean. Also, please make sure to leave the blinds down until they are completely dry.

How Do I Clean Fabric Blinds?

Naturally, the method to clean fabric blinds is slightly different than those of wooden or plastic blinds. While there are certain tools available that could make the job a whole lot easier, there are some basics you can use to get your fabric blinds clean and pristine.

One of the biggest problems you will encounter with fabric blinds is dust. Naturally, you cannot wash your fabric blinds as you would do with other materials, as too much liquid could damage the fabric material. Instead, you can use a tool that can pick up dust, this may include a clean dust cloth or a dusting mitt. Then, wipe over each of the slats with the dust cloth or mitt to remove the dust and get your blinds clean and pristine.

Certain fabric blinds can be cleaned with the soft brush attachment on your vacuum cleaner. However, always remember to be careful when it comes to using a vacuum on your blinds, this due to the fact that excessive suction could cause damage to your blinds.

How Do I Get Yellow Blinds White Again?

When you have blinds made from PVC or a similar material, it is not uncommon for those blinds to become yellow over time, this can be caused by smoking in the house or simply by not maintaining the blinds on a regular basis. Fortunately, there is an easy way to get those blinds beautiful again.

If you work with PVC blinds, there are two ways to get them shiny and white again. The first method involves a bucket of water and a small amount of bleach. If you rather not make this solution yourself, you could also buy some oxygenated bleach cleaner in store.

Please note, working with bleach can be dangerous. Always make sure you wear gloves when working with such chemical solutions. Once your hands are properly protected, you can wipe down the slats.

Are your blinds made from PVC and can you remove them completely? Add some bleach to a bath of water and let your blinds soak for fifteen minutes. Take them out and let them airdry for maximum result.

If you rather not work with bleach, try a mixture of lukewarm water and baking soda. Of course, you will have to wipe down the baking soda residue when you’re done, so always follow this cleaning method with a regular clean, as described above.

Looking for some accessories that can make your cleaning job easier? Check out the indoor blind accessories available at Spotlight, which include some great dusters! Grab yours today and benefit from a wonderful discount.

14 Different Types of Blinds for 2021! (Extensive Buying Guide)

Here is your perfect guide in buying blinds and get to know the latest and modern types of blinds in the market today.

Blinds are one of the most popular types of window covering, based not only on anecdotal evidence but also on the results of our ongoing poll.

Yes, it seems that people prefer a window shade, to a curtain- as 58% of people we polled prefer blinds out of all window treatment options (750 people polled).

It’s not surprising. Blinds are highly functional, versatile and can look pretty stylish too! Whether you opt for woven wood shades or the softer, more homely aesthetic of a fabric blind; you can’t deny that this type of window covering looks neat, clean and aesthetically pleasing in any window frame!

While blinds might be a bit difficult to clean, the benefits definitely outweigh the cleaning hassle. If you’re looking to pimp your window treatment – then blinds could be the easiest way to transform the interior (and exterior) of your home!

However, not all blinds look the same, nor do they operate in the same way. You’ll need to know a little more about the different types of blinds if you want to go ahead and make a purchase.

We can help with our epic blind buying guide set out below.

Table of Contents

Related: Types of Window Treatments | Types of Drapes | Blinds vs. Shades vs. Shutters vs. Curtains | Window Drape Ideas | Blackout Curtains vs. Blinds vs. Window Films

The Blinds Buyer’s Guide

The complete buyers guide to blinds and shades for your windows . We’ve tried to make this guide as comprehensive as possible to help you learn all about the different types of blinds, and make an informed buying decision.

Before using this guide, however, it may be helpful to ask yourself a few questions – and make a few considerations.

For example, what will be the primary purpose of your blinds? Will they be decorative or more blackout blinds to help keep sunlight out? Do you prefer a vertical blind or horizontal blinds? Do you require manual blinds such as a roller blind or roman shade, or would motorized blinds be more suited to your needs?

A. Understanding Different Window Treatments

More often than not, the term ‘blinds’ refers to both blinds and shades. While all different types of blinds and shades serve the same basic function, there is a fundamental difference that separates the two. So, before we go any further, let’s make sure we understand what makes them different.

1. Blinds

Blinds come in a variety of different types, materials, and sizes. All blinds have individual slats, which adjust up and down. Blinds can also tilt from side to side, which allows you to control the amount of light entering the room.

For most blinds, a cord located on one side of the blinds allow you to adjust the blinds up and down. A rod located on the other side of the blinds controls the tilt of the blinds, allowing you to open the slats, or close them.

2. Shades

Shades also come in many types, materials, and sizes. Unlike blinds, they’re made from one piece of material, instead of individual slats. For this reason, they can be adjusted up and down, but not side to side


Different Types of Blinds
1. Vertical Blinds

Vertical blinds have individual slats that run along a track at the top of the blind. Depending on the style, vertical blinds either open from side to side, or by parting in the middle. These blinds are a popular choice for patio doors and floor-to-ceiling windows. But, they can still be used over smaller windows as well.

Materials: You can get vertical blinds in many materials to suit your budget and design including wood, faux wood and PVC.


Vertical blinds not only look great, they’re easier to clean.

Sliding doors: If you’re outfitting blinds for a sliding door, vertical blinds are a great solution.

Large windows: If you have huge windows, vertical blinds are a great solution (compared to horizontal which can bow or bend over time… I know from personal experience).

Small windows: Venetian style blinds are best for smaller windows and single doors.

Choosing and buying vertical blinds

How do you choose which site to buy vertical blinds from?

The best approach is to check out all of the BIG 3 vertical blinds stores below and browse their inventories as well as comb through their custom ordering process to ensure they offer the style, color, material, sizes and brands you want. If you’re getting similar results from more than one, go with price but also be sure to inquire about installation and shipping.

Choosing the right vertical blinds for you when ordering online.

Step 1: Measure the height and width of your windows and/or doors on which you’ll be placing vertical blinds.

Step 2: Browse the gallery of many different styles. Put together a short list of the options you like (check that it’s in stock… there’s nothing worse than jumping through a pile of ordering hoops only to be told it’s out of stock.

Step 3: Go through the customization options including size, material, texture (if offered), color, control type, stack options, brackets, valance (if getting a valance), warranty options and of course quantity.

Buying blinds is an involved process but you can save a lot of money buying online instead

Where can you buy blinds?

One of the most popular websites for blinds, offers a full suite of customization including material, sizing and colors. Worth checking out the site, not only for the many types of vertical blinds but also any big discounts they’re running.

Shop an insane amount of existing blinds inventory on the website or place a fully customized order by brand, feature, width, height, material and color. This site frequently offers big discounts.

Let’s round out the big 3 for blinds online with which also has a massive inventory, full order customization, big sales (almost always) and a great website.

2. Venetian Blinds

Venetian blinds are the most popular style of blinds. They feature horizontal slats that attach with string or strips of cloth known as tapes. As Venetian blinds are raised, the bottom slat is pressed into the slat above it.

These blinds can be custom-fitted for any window including arched windows (yeah, really).

Smart home technology includes motorized features as well.

Choosing and buying Venetian blinds

The term “Venetian Blinds” is an umbrella term for horizontal slat-style blinds. These are the most common types of blinds used on windows, especially smaller windows. They are completely customizable so take the time when ordering to understand all the features you’re opting for and of course your sizing.

Sizing: You definitely want as snug of a fit as you can without the edges of the blinds scraping or scratching along the inside of your window or door frame.

Style: Venetian Blinds include both thick and thin styles although these different styles now have their own sub-names to differentiate the various styles within the “Venetian Blinds” category.

Materials: Venetian blinds come in every conceivable material that you can buy blinds in. Specifically, materials include aluminum, bamboo, faux wood, PVC, vinyl and of course wood.

Where are Venetian blinds best used? You can place them on windows and doors of all sizes but they are best for smaller windows and single doors. If you need blinds on a double door and wish for them to span the entire width, vertical blinds might be best. Same with wide picture and bay windows.

Where can you buy Venetian Blinds?

You can find local custom blinds outfits in many towns and cities but you can also buy them online. Definitely get some quotes locally but then compare those prices to the big online blinds stores. Two that specifically offer Venetian blinds include:

3. Mini Blinds

Mini blinds are very similar in operation to Venetian blinds but they feature slats of a smaller width than traditional Venetian blinds. The slats are usually about 1” thick. Here’s an example of mini blinds.

Personally, I prefer thicker blinds. Mini blinds can look ratty after a while. The thicker wood or faux wood are far more elegant but they cost more money.

Another disadvantage of mini blinds (and micro blinds) is that they’re more difficult to clean. There are more slats to clean and it’s more finicky work.

4. Micro Blinds

Micro blinds are an even tinier version of mini-blinds. These types of blinds feature slats that are ½” thick.

5. Panel Blinds

Panel blinds are another popular choice for patio doors, as well as very large windows. Panel blinds feature sections that move along a track, which allows you to open and close them.

6. Pleated Shades

Pleated shades (sometimes referred to as pleated blinds) feature a piece of material that’s pleated so that the shade forms an accordion-like pattern that can be raised or lowered. These shades have a similar look to Venetian blinds, while also “softening” the look of the window. But, they cannot be adjusted from side to side, like blinds. Pleated shades are usually made from fabric or paper.

7. Cellular Shades

Cellular shades, also know as honeycomb shades (or honeycomb blinds) look similar to pleated shades and are also made from similar materials. However, unlike a pleated shade, cellular shades are made of two different pieces of material.

The front and back sections the cellular shade are open in the middle, which creates a pocket that provides insulation. Cellular shades are available in a variety of different cell sizes designed to fit the needs of different windows. These shades are a great way to help your home stay cool in the summer and warm in the winter. Cellular shades also provide sound insulation, as well.

7. Roman Shades

Roman shades (also known as Roman blinds) are a very traditional window covering made from fabric or materials like jute or seagrass. There are several different styles of Roman shades available, but they all share one thing in common: As a Roman shade is raised, it folds into itself, similar to how a Venetian blind operates. Since the fabric of a roman shade continues to fold into itself, it can create quite a large stack of fabric at the top of the window when they’re raised completely. So, while Roman shades offer a beautiful and timeless look, they do remove a portion of the viewable space of your window when raised.

Roman shades are available both lined or unlined to suit different needs. The linings often offer additional features, like blackout and thermal linings.

8. Roller Shades

Another popular shade option is roller shades. Roller shades are usually made from synthetic or natural fabrics and can be rolled up or down to suit your needs.

Roller shades are available in several different styles that mount to the window in a variety of different ways. The most economical roller shades feature an external system that allows you to see all of the different mechanisms and mounting hardware of the shade (which can also help in the event of tangles!)

If you’re after something a little more premium, stylish roller shade options are also available featuring valances, cornices or fascia’s which hide all of the components of the shade and provide a more polished look. Like Roman shades, roller shades are available in a broad range of natural and synthetic fabrics. They often have additional features such as thermal or blackout linings (effectively creating a blackout shade), and can also come in the form of double roller blinds – which is essentially two blinds installed on the same bracket.

10. Tie-Up Shades

Tie-up shades are sort of like a cross between a window blind and a curtain . Tie-Up shades are available in a broad range of materials. These shades are constructed from a piece of fabric that features ties that extend beyond the bottom of the shade.

You can raise the shade by rolling it up and then tieing the shade in place. This style of shade offers a casual or country look that blends seamlessly with many styles of decor.

11. Solar Shades

Solar shades are very similar to roller shades. Their purpose to reduce the amount of sunlight, glare, UV rays and heat entering the room from outside while preserving the window’s view. If your main prerogative is to limit the effects of sunlight (and pretty much provide a pair of ‘sunglasses’ for your window) then a solar shade is the best option.

12. Outdoor Shades

Outdoor shades are usually made from heavy duty, weather-resistant materials, and are placed outside of the windows (or glass doors) that they are covering. Outdoor shades are often used on a patio door or window to reduce the amount of sun exposure and heat that’s entering the area, although internal blinds like solar shades or skylight blinds (or conservatory blinds) are also often used for these purposes.

13. Skylight Shades

Skylight shades are available in many different styles including roller, pleated and cellular. These shades are designed to cover difficult to reach skylights. Conservatory blinds can also include skylight shades (used to cover and insulate the glass roofs of conservatories).

Cellular shades are especially popular for skylights because of their insulating properties. Skylight shades usually feature a largely removable rod that’s used to raise, lower or adjust the shade. Sometimes, skylight shades are raised or lowered with a handle instead of a rod. Automatic versions are also available.

14. Smart Blinds

They still may seem like something out of a science fiction novel, but smart blinds are becoming increasingly common thanks to smart home technology . Smart blinds and shades are available in many traditional styles, as well as new, high tech styles.

Smart blinds sync with a smartphone application and can be controlled in groups or individually. They can also be programmed to open and close at certain points during the day. Not only are smart blinds some of the most visually attractive on the market, but they can also help you save on energy costs.

If you’re interested in smart blinds but don’t want to shell out the cash to retrofit your home with them, there are also smart controllers available. These smart controllers allow you to outfit your existing blinds with the same type of smart technology that pricey smart blinds use.

C. Blinds Materials

Not only are blinds and shades available in a wide range of different types, but there are also a wide range of materials they can be constructed of as well. Depending on the room you’re installing the window coverings in and your personal taste, the material the window coverings are made from will likely be important to you.

1. Wood

Wood blinds are a popular choice for most applications. They offer the natural beauty and warmth of wood, and they’re available in many different stains, types of wood and colors. Wooden blinds are a strong choice for most rooms in the home, however, in rooms or areas where humidity and moisture are a concern, they aren’t the best choice. Since wood is a natural material that can expand and contract over time, wood blinds are susceptible to warping, splitting, cracking or breaking.

Wood is also the material of choice when it comes to installing more permanent window coverings, such as shutters, which are a category in their own right category (there are plenty of styles – from a full height shutter to a stylish plantation shutter).

2. Faux Wood

Faux wood blinds provide the same beautiful look like real wood. However, they’re made from synthetic materials, which makes faux wood blinds more economical than wood blinds. Since they aren’t made from natural wood, they can be used in areas and rooms with higher humidity, like bathrooms. Since wood blinds are so durable and affordable, they have become a very popular choice for any application.

3. Plastic

Plastic blinds are the most economical of all materials. They’re available in many different colors and sizes. They’re well suited for all applications, particularly areas where fabric blinds wouldn’t be suitable (such as a bathroom window). However, they don’t provide the same luxurious look that you see with other materials such as real wood blinds. It’s also important to note that there are environmental considerations when it comes to choosing plastic products – so if you are eco-conscious then this could be one to miss.

Also, be aware that plastic blinds is a broad term, and could include other types of blinds that happen to be made of plastic – such as vinyl blinds.

4. Metal

Metal blinds offer a similar look to plastic blinds and are available in an even larger variety of finishes. They’re resistant to moisture which makes them a great choice for bathrooms and humid environments.

Metal blinds are often available in different gauges. The smaller the gauge, the thicker and more durable the slats. Since they’re made of metal, these blinds tend to be the noisiest variety on the market which may bother certain people.

5. Paper

Paper shades are a popular and economical choice for many different decor styles. Paper shades are most commonly available in pleated shades. Paper shades are usually a solid color, but occasionally they feature beautiful decorative motifs, pictures, or paintings. Graphic shades are especially popular in Asia and can make a beautiful and unique addition to your home.

6. Natural Fabrics

Natural fabrics are a popular material used to produce shades. But, the availability of different synthetic fabrics has cut into their market share a bit. The most common fabrics you’ll see used are cotton, jute, and seagrass. These fabrics are usually available as tie-up, roller or roman shades. Natural fabric shades are relatively easy to clean, and they’re durable. However, they aren’t resistant to fading and can take quite a pounding from the sun’s UV rays over time.

7. Synthetic Fabrics

Synthetic fabrics are the most popular material used to produce certain types of shades like tie-up, roller or Roman. Like natural fabrics, they’re durable and easy to clean. But, synthetic fabrics are usually highly resistant to fading and tend to maintain their beauty for longer, compared to natural fabric shades.

D. Production Method

How a blind or shade is produced will likely be a major consideration for you as you search for the perfect window covering. Depending on your budget and the amount of time you have, you’ll need to choose between made to measure and ready made options for your window coverings.

1. Ready Made

Ready made blinds and shades are made in most popular window sizes. Usually, they can be adjusted by the customer to provide a more custom fit for their windows. Ready made blinds are much cheaper and in most cases, the store can deliver them the same day you order them.

Usually, these blinds are installed in the home by the customer.

While ready made blinds offer a fairly wide range of options and styles, you won’t be able to fully customize the look of your window treatments in the way you can with made to measure blinds or shades.

2. Made To Measure

Made to measure blinds are custom made for the customer by the manufacturer. With made to measure blinds, the customer can customize every single aspect of their window covering including color, finish, material, hardware configuration, and additional features. There are many different benefits of choosing custom made window coverings.

Made to measure options are best for customers looking for the perfect option for their home, without the compromises you’d usually be forced to make with ready-made options. They’re also the best choice for homes with odd shaped windows that aren’t readily available in ready-made sizes.

Depending on the level of customization desired, it can take a week or more for the manufacturer to produce made to measure blinds. Once manufacturer delivers the blinds, they’re usually installed by the manufacturer or a trained professional. As you’d imagine, made to measure blinds and shades are considerably more expensive than the ready-made varieties.

E. Blinds Features

All blinds and shades serve the purpose of providing privacy and limiting the amount of natural light that enters a room. But, some window coverings have additional features which add to their versatility and usefulness.

1. Blackout

One of the most popular additional features of different shades is blackout fabric. With this fabric, external light is almost completely blocked by the shade. This feature is a popular addition to shades that are used in bedrooms, as well in rooms where privacy is key.

2. Thermal

Another popular feature that you’ll find in many shades is thermal fabric or thermal insulating pockets. Usually, the thermal fabric is sewn onto the back of the decorative fabric. In some cases, there is a thermal lining or a foam-like material inside of the blinds. This additional layer helps to insulate the window which helps keep the room cool in the summer and warmer in the winter.

3. Sheer

Sheer fabrics can be added to shades to provide an additional level of functionality to the product. Sheer shades serve the same purpose as other shades, but they feature slats like blinds do, which can be adjusted to increase or decrease the amount of light entering a room. Sheer shades offer the soft look of shades while providing the additional level of functionality that’s typically reserved for blinds.

4. Cordless

This feature is especially popular in homes with small children since there is no cord for children to break, or hurt themselves with. With cordless blinds and shades, the cord is eliminated completely, allowing the window covering to be adjusted with the touch of your hand, as opposed to with the cord. By eliminating the cord, the blinds also become much easier to operate. Because let’s be honest, does anyone really know how to work the cords properly?

5. Top Down Bottom Up

The addition of top down bottom up functionality is a great way to add visual interest and increase the versatility of your shades. These systems can be raised or lowered from the top, as well as the bottom, which offers the customer even more options for light control and privacy. Top down bottom up shades are especially useful in rooms with many windows, as they can be adjusted individually to create interesting and visually appealing configurations, like in the photo below.

Despite the fact that top down bottom up shades feature a more complicated design, they’re actually incredibly easy to install and maintain. Many varieties of top down bottom up shades can be installed without so much as a single screw.

F. Operation

Thanks to the wonders of technology, a new consideration for you to make has been introduced. Now, blinds and shades are available in their traditional configuration, as well as automatic versions as well.

1. Manual

Manual blinds and shades adjust by hand. Traditionally, a cord located on one side of the blinds or shades controls the height of the blinds. Pulling on the cord will cause the blinds to be raised or lowered. With blinds, a rod on the opposite side of the controls allows you to control the orientation of the slats to control how much light can enter the room.

2. Automatic

New automatic systems add a touch of sophistication and cool to your blinds or shutters. With these systems, a hidden motor is added to the top of the blinds or shades, and they can be adjusted by remote control. These systems come at a price, and they’re considerably more expensive than manual varieties. Check out this video of an automatic blinds system in action.

II. Where To Buy

Now that you’re armed with all of the information you’ll need to select the perfect blinds or shades for your home let’s take a look at some retailers who specialize in window coverings.

1. Ready Made

If you’re interested in ready-made blinds, you can purchase them practically anywhere. Big box retailers like Target and Walmart sell several different types of blinds and shades. Home improvement stores also have blinds and shades available, and they tend to have a wider variety of styles available.

There’s also plenty of brick and mortar and online specialty stores with an even wider range of choices and styles available. Here’s some stores you can shop online or in your area for ready made blinds.

2. Made To Measure

If your needs call for a more custom solution, and you’ve decided to go the made to measure route, you may want to consider where you shop more carefully. There’s a strong chance that there are many custom blind and shade stores in your area. These stores can walk you through the entire process of selecting your window coverings and options. They can handle all of your installation needs.

There’s an even wider variety of online retailers that can service your custom window covering needs. But keep in mind that with these services, you’ll probably need to arrange installation yourself once you’ve received your order. Here are some of the most popular and reputable custom blind and shade stores online.

III. Additional Considerations

1. Price

Since there are so many different blinds and shades available, there’s also a pretty broad range of prices, as well. There are several factors that go into determining the price of window coverings. These factors include things like the style, material and any additional features the window covering has.

Another huge factor that goes into determining the price of window coverings is how they operate. Manual blinds and shades are considerably cheaper than fully automatic systems.

Finally, the final price factor is the construction of the blinds. Blinds which are ready made and available off the shelf are considerably cheaper than blinds which are custom made for your individual home.

2. Measure Twice, Cut Once

The adage measure twice, cut once is particularly important when it comes to blinds, especially if you’re going to be handling installation yourself or if you’re shopping for custom blinds online.

With ready made blinds, you’ll want to measure accurately, so you’ll be able to achieve a polished finished look once your window coverings are installed.

If you’re custom ordering online, measurements are arguably even more important. Since the manufacturer will be creating your window coverings to the exact measurements you provide, accuracy will be key to ensure a perfect fit in your home.

If you’re uneasy about the idea of doing your own measurements, it may be a good idea to consult with a custom window covering shop in your area. That way, their trained staff can walk you through every aspect of the process and also handle the measurements.

3. Style

With so many different types of window coverings available, you’ll have no problem pinpointing the types of blinds that are going to look best in your home. But, if you’re feeling a little overwhelmed by the different options as you search for new window covers, check out these interior design tips, or search for some inspiration on Pinterest.

Frequently Asked Questions about Blinds

Below are answers to common questions about blinds.

When were window blinds invented?

They may have been around a little while longer than you thought they were. Window blinds can be traced all the way back to ancient Egyptian and Chinese cultures. The first versions of window blinds would have been made by stringing reeds and bamboo together.

The Persians brought the blinds to Venice, where they became extremely popular, hence the “Venetian” blind. And, the rest is history.

An Englishman named Edward Bevan received the first patent for the Venetian Blind in 1769. Constructed with thin strips of wood, the blinds were held in a wooden frame for support. They were introduced to the states in 1841 when John Hampson from New Orleans, upgraded the features, allowing the slats to be adjustable.

How long do window blinds last?

Believe it or not, their longevity isn’t necessarily based on what you spend. More expensive blinds will usually be made with better quality materials and can last longer than cheaper window blinds. But, how long they last really depends on how well you take care of them. If they’re dusted and cleaned regularly, with an occasional professional cleaning, they can last 10 years or longer.

Can window blinds be repaired?

Almost anything can be fixed, including window blinds. There are usually extra slats that come with the blinds in case one breaks. It’s a little tricky, but they can be weaved back into place. There are also professional services that repair window blinds.

Can used window blinds be recycled?

While they can be recycled, it might not be as simple as tossing them into your recycling bin. Most blinds are constructed of a few different materials. And, each can have a different recycling method. You should always check with your local recycling company to find out.

If everything is made out of aluminum, you should be fine to include them with your normal recycling. Otherwise, you can take the different materials apart and recycle them appropriately. It may take a little more effort, but think about all of the good that you are doing by recycling.

Can used window blinds be sold?

It seems that there is a market for everything. And, window blinds can definitely be sold as long as they are still in good condition. The only challenge is finding someone with the same window sizes.

Garage sales, flea markets, and thrift stores are where you will commonly find used window blinds. There are even online avenues, including social media sites, where individuals can buy and sell almost anything.

Are blinds expensive?

They can be. But, they don’t have to be. If you are on a tight budget, you can find basic window blinds either online or at your local big-box retailer for only a few dollars each. Blinds with different styles and colors will be a little more expensive. Or, you can make them a home improvement investment by having them professionally designed.

Can blinds be cut to size?

You’ll usually be able to find window blinds that are exactly the width of the window that you are covering, but not always. And, depending on the type of blind you have, the length may not be an issue. But, both the width and length of blinds can be cut to fit the exact size of your window.

Can blinds be washed?

Not only can they be, but they will need it just as much as any other surface of your home. Depending on the material that the blinds are made of, there are different cleaning methods. You can also find some nifty cleaning tools to help. And, you can always call in a professional for a deep clean.

Do blinds help keep a room cool?

Window blinds are a great way to help control the temperature. In the summertime, you can keep them closed on windows where the sun is beating down. It helps keep the room from heating up and keeps the cold air feeling nice and cool.

They’ll also help control the heat in the winter as well. Keep them opened to let the sunshine in, adding heat to the room. Keeping them closed will also help with drafty windows.

Can window blinds be painted?

Yes, they can. There are even some newer, trendy painting techniques that can even make a bold statement on your window blinds. Painting old blinds has become increasingly popular as more and more people are trying to find ways to help our environment by reusing and recycling.

You can use your DIY skills or hire a pro to paint your blinds. You are only limited by your own imagination.

What are continuous cord loop blinds?

Continuous cord loop blinds differ slightly from other types of roller blinds – as they operate using a pulley system. In this type of blind, a continuous cord loop lift returns back to the headrail.

What are panel track blinds?

Panel track blinds travel along a track which can be mounted inside or outside of the window or door frame, or on the ceiling. They can be customized to be horizontal blinds, or vertical – depending on how and where the track is mounted.

What is the best blind for the bedroom?

The most popular styles of blinds for the bedroom include roman shades, blackout blinds, woven shade blinds, and wooden Venetian blinds. However, most types of blinds will do well in the bedroom.

Blinds vs. Curtains: The Best Window Treatments for Your Home


Window treatments let you control light, privacy, and indoor temperature while complementing your décor. While you’ve got a variety of options to choose from, blinds, which feature movable slats, and curtains or drapes, made of fabric panels, are among the most popular. Blinds and curtains each come with particular benefits and drawbacks. Ahead, we’ve put the two head-to-head—blinds vs. curtains—and outlined six key differences to help you decide which window treatment will be a winner in your home.

Blinds are generally less expensive.


Blinds require less material and time to manufacture and take less time to install. In 10 to 20 minutes, a pro can put brackets in a window frame, mount the blind, and attach the mechanisms that move the slats, at a total cost of between $43 to $94 per window. Plastic blinds will lower your material costs, whereas wood and high-quality vinyl blinds will increase them. For eight windows, roughly the number found in two large living areas plus two to four bedrooms, that adds up to between $345 and $750 for blinds.

Curtains are usually pricier—from $50 to $250 per window, or $400 to $2,000 for eight windows—because they take more material and time to make, and more time to install. A pro will take an hour or more to install level brackets above the window, slide the panels onto the rod, hang and secure the rod onto the bracket, and then style the curtains in an attractive arrangement. To reduce costs, choose cotton curtains over linen or silk.

RELATED: Lose the Drapes: 15 Better Ways to Dress a Window


Blinds offer more light control options.

The slats on blinds, situated either vertically or horizontally (known as Venetian blinds), can be operated in two ways for light control. Pulling the lift cord that hangs from the top lets you lift and lower Venetian blinds, and move vertical blinds from one side to the other. You can also twist the tilt wand (a long, stick-like apparatus) to rotate the slats, changing the angle at which light enters. While blinds offer more ways to control light, their slatted design means that some light will enter even when the blinds are fully closed. When curtains are closed they block virtually all light.

Blinds are easier to clean.


Blinds have a hard, slick surface, so dusting them with a microfiber cloth is quick and easy. To remove dust from both sides of blinds, close the slats and wipe with a duster from the top down or from one side to another, then rotate the slats 180 degrees and repeat in the opposite direction. To get rid of stubborn dirt and stains, moisten a soft cloth with plain water or a mixture of 25 percent white vinegar and 75 percent water, wipe down the front and back of the slats, and then use a fresh cloth to dry.

Cleaning curtains is a bit more involved. To remove dust, vacuum top to bottom with a dust brush attachment. Banishing dirt and stains requires spritzing the soiled or stained areas with a mixture of 25 percent white vinegar and 75 percent water, a store-bought stain pre-treatment solution (e.g., Shout Advanced Stain Remover, available on Amazon), or (for mold) a solution of one part bleach to four parts water. Let the solution dwell for a few minutes, then machine-wash one or two curtain panels at a time, according to the care label, and air-dry to prevent shrinkage. Iron as directed if necessary.

Blinds last longer.

It’s not unusual for well-maintained blinds to keep their looks for 15 years or more. Blinds’ synthetic material, be it plastic, vinyl, aluminum, or polymer-coated wood, makes them resistant to discoloration and staining. They’re also more rigid and rugged than curtains, so less prone to everyday wear and tear. Fabric curtains, be they cotton, linen, velvet, or silk, are more prone to tearing, staining, and molding, so they often need replacement within a decade.

Installing new window treatments?

Get a pro to do it for you! Receive free, no-commitment quotes from trusted local installers.



Curtains offer better insulation and soundproofing.

Both curtains and blinds can increase the overall insulation of your windows to help maintain heat, resulting in lower utility bills in cold weather. But curtains, because they lack the slats through which heat escapes, have been shown to reduce heat loss by up to 37 percent during chilly months, compared to the approximately 14 percent heat loss reduction you might get from blinds. The thicker the curtains or blinds, the more insulating they are, with thermal curtains that have acrylic foam between the layers of fabric and honeycomb blinds, with their honeycomb-shaped grid of air pockets, being the most insulating.

In warm weather, however, blinds beat curtains in energy efficiency. Because blinds leak more heat from a room, they also decrease indoor heat gain more efficiently in the summer, by around 45 percent, which can lower your AC bills. Curtains, which leak less heat, reduce indoor heat gain by only 33 percent in the summer.

Both curtains and blinds also aid in sound absorption to keep out neighborhood noises. But curtains, especially those made of heavyweight, tightly woven fabrics like velvet or velour, perform better than blinds because they’re thicker and lack slats through which sound enters.


Curtains offer more design possibilities.

You’ll find curtains in a wider variety of materials, textures, styles, colors, patterns, and levels of transparency, from geometric-inspired cotton curtains to sheer silk curtains. They work well in rooms with classic interior design styles, be it French country, mid-century modern, or Hollywood glam. Curtains are also DIY-friendly for folks skilled with a sewing machine. Blinds tend to come in a narrower range of materials and styles and only in solid colors; this minimalism makes them better suited for the modern look of the Scandinavian, industrial, and coastal interior styles.


Pair the two window treatments to maximize the benefits.

To gain the benefits of both curtains and blinds, feel free to install both. Consider, for instance, curtains in low-moisture areas where mold isn’t an issue, such as living rooms and bedrooms, to maximize your design options, insulation, and soundproofing. In high-moisture rooms like the kitchen or master bath, where mold growth is a concern, install blinds for a durable, easy-to-clean window treatment with a high degree of lighting control. You can even layer the two treatments in a single room to boost privacy and create a more intimate setting, installing the blinds first, then hanging curtains on a rod.

Installing new window treatments?

Get a pro to do it for you! Receive free, no-commitment quotes from trusted local installers.


Pairing Curtains and Blinds – Curtain World

It’s no secret that the right curtains or blinds for your Perth home can change the look and feel of a room dramatically, but what about when they’re paired together? We often get asked the question ‘do curtains and blinds work together?’ The answer is, for the most part, ‘yes’ – when paired, the two can bring out a flexible décor and ensure adequate blocking of light and privacy control. However, there are some style guidelines to follow to get the look just right.

If you’d like to chat to one of our friendly sales staff feel to book your free measure and quote.

Do – Choose the Type of Blind First

When matching curtains and blinds together, it’s best to decide on the type of blind you want for the space first. The most common styles are roller blinds and venetian blindsas they pair well with drapes and provide a basic, solid block of colour to work with. It’s important you pay attention to the colour and fabric selections, and how these work together in the room.

Popular blind materials in WA tend to be timber and aluminium. For a more natural look in the space, timber blinds feature warm colours and pair well with curtains that have the same attributes. Consider a muted shade of your main colour with the timber or use the window dressings to introduce an accent colour to the rest of the room. For example, if you have cool colours in the room (blues and whites) try burnt orange curtains around the natural tones of the timber blinds to add a pop of colour. If bright colours aren’t your thing, white or light crèmes for the drapes create a crisp look that works well with a variety of blind styles.

Don’t – Pair Print with Print

If you’re going for prints, pairing curtains and blinds together looks best when a solid colour is chosen for one and a print is chosen for the other. Combining prints on both the curtains and blinds can look too overpowering in a room, especially if the space is small or subjected to a lot of prints already. An ideal combination if you’re opting for prints, is blinds in a single colour, paired with patterned curtains that feature the colour on the blind.

If you love the natural texture of timber, install a solid colour curtain to balance the look or create layers of texture by adding patterned drapes to contrast it. Mixing the colours and patterns of window treatments can add a lot of flavour to a room and look very artistic – when it’s done correctly. Knowing what colours and patterns work best together is crucial when properly mixing curtains and blinds.

Do – Go High and Wide

One of the biggest advantages of combining curtains and blinds is how they can change the perception of the size of your windows. This is perfect if your home is quite small. A standard size window can be turned into a large one when drapes and blinds are paired well together and your ceiling made to look much taller than it really is. For example, install roman shades a few inches below the ceiling to change the height perception. Then, mantle the curtain rod at the same level as the blinds but extend it 30 – 60cm beyond the window.

Don’t – Be Afraid to Accessorise

The combination of curtains and blinds add a stronger style statement in a space and the accessories you choose should go along with this. Don’t be afraid to accessorise, just keep it humble. For tiebacks, a simple fabric tieback can create a draped effect or install a wall-mounted metal or piece that can be easily hid behind the curtains. Overall decorative pieces, like huge metal holdings attached to the wall or tiebacks with tassels can look awkward against natural shades like timber.

Pelmets are another fantastic way to accessorise your window dressings and add a stylish, decorative finish. Because they are actually built into the architecture of a room, recessed pelmets hide the curtain tracks and operating components in the ceiling space to achieve a streamlined finish. Accessorising with pelmets also provides better insulation in the room and complete blockout. Whilst all window dressings can benefit, roman blinds with pelmets are most popular with their sophisticated, clean look.


Do – Make the Room Feel Cosy

Being such a powerful room feature, it’s important you really consider the effect you want your paired curtains and blinds to have. You want it to feel, cosy warm and inviting so keep this in mind through the decorating process.

Fullness is important in transforming the look and feel of the space and this is created when blinds are layered beneath curtains. For a real cosy, layered effect roman blinds provide an ideal solution. They can be sheer, textured or bonded with a blockout fabric. Linen sheers are best paired with roman blinds to frame the view. Pair sheers without a heavy sheen or metallic threading with timber blinds for a more relaxed and simplified effect.

Don’t – Pick the Same Curtains across the House

When you want to get your decorating sorted quickly, it can be easy to find a decent pair of curtains and use them across the whole house. But, from a design perspective, this can make the spaces seem disjointed.

Pairing blinds and curtains can tie the whole space together, so you want to make sure they match the atmosphere you want to create, and for most of us the atmosphere is different in every room. Be sure to play around with the light each space gets too; this can help you to experiment with neutral fitted sheers on different styles.

Do – Match the Curtain and Blind Colour with the Rod Colour

As with matching accessories to your curtains and blinds, it’s important that the hardware complements the window dressing too. Once you have decided on the colours, make sure you specify the exact tints so the curtain rod can be matched.

High-shine rods, like bright silver or gold can look too much with curtains and blinds so avoid these. Opt for hardware with a matte finish to keep with the overall look of both styles of window treatments you’ve chosen.


For many homeowners, windows are often viewed as an afterthought but their power to make or break a room is inevitable. Add a dressing to a window, and the room becomes brighter, softer or dynamic. When it’s time to retreat in your space, Perth homeowners want to be able to control the effects of curious eyes and sunlight without completely feeling cut off. The combination of curtains and blinds can help to frame and enhance your view, whilst give you all the internal benefits too.

Dark Spot in the Eye – Dr. Shilova’s Eye Clinic

The entire system of the human body is influenced by the changes that occur with age. For most people, after 40 years of age, visual acuity may decrease. A common problem is the appearance of dark spots before the eyes. However, this defect is sometimes not related to age. With the development of technology, a change in lifestyle, which is mainly associated with prolonged work at the computer, which means overwork, young people may also face such a pathology.When a dark spot in the eye covers the image, causes discomfort when trying to look at an object, this signals negative changes in the body, which may indicate various diseases.

Even insignificant overlaps of the visual field cannot be ignored, since they can speak of the gradual development of various diseases. To find out the true reasons for the appearance of such spots, you need to contact an ophthalmologist. The use of the latest techniques and modern equipment will allow the doctor to quickly examine the fundus, establish an accurate diagnosis and prescribe the appropriate treatment.The reasons for an urgent appeal to a specialist are intense opacities, the appearance of a blind curtain that affects most of the eye, the appearance of flashes of light in the field of view when considering a background uniform in color, and others.


Types of spots on the eyeball

In medicine, a blind spot in the visual field that is not associated with the peripheral boundaries is called scotoma. A spot is an area that is deprived of the ability to transmit light, although usually the light sensitivity around it is normal.Lack of visual perception can manifest itself in different ways:

  • focus becomes difficult when looking forward at near or farther objects;
  • shading is located only in one place and does not change its position when the eyes move;
  • the spots seem to flicker. They are also called “flies”;
  • color perception is impaired. Previously saturated shades appear faded and faded. It is also difficult for a person to determine exactly what color is in front of him.

Consider two types of cattle:

It should be said that the shape of pathological spots can determine a particular disease. For example, a hereditary and rather rare visual impairment – retinal pigment degeneration – is characterized by a scotoma in the form of rings.And with glaucoma, which occurs with increased eye pressure and leads to the termination of the functioning of the optic nerve, most often there are spots in the form of an arc.

What contributes to the appearance of the defect

Limitation of visual perception in a specific area of ​​the eyeball may indicate the presence of various diseases. Deviations can affect the vitreous humor. It fills the space between the lens and the retina and acts as an anatomical magnifying glass.With it, the eye can focus. So why do dark spots appear? Through the vitreous body, light enters the nerves located in the central part of the macula. When it becomes cloudy, the fibers stick together. The nerves responsible for the clear image reproduction lose their function. The luminous flux cannot reach the required place, where it usually differentiates, as a result of which blackouts appear. They vary in size and shape. The main causes of dark spots include abnormalities that occur:

  • in the cranial nerves responsible for the convergence of the eyes;
  • in the vessels, which is associated with sclerotic changes that cause opacity of the vitreous body.Phasclerosis is characterized by dehydration, as a result of which the lens loses its elasticity;
  • As a result of changes in the intervertebral discs and cartilaginous tissues, cervical chondrosis and other pathologies develop. They, in turn, contribute to the spasm of the eye vessels;
  • in the endocrine system. So, in patients with diabetes mellitus, vision begins to deteriorate. This is due to a malfunction of the blood vessels. This complication is called diabetic retinopathy.

Some people develop dark spots in the eye due to prolonged exposure to harsh weather conditions. For example, they include extremely low or high air temperatures. The risk group also includes those who constantly experience unbearable physical and mental stress. The provoking factors also include bad habits, such as smoking and overeating.

The disease is diagnosed mainly after a person overcomes 40 years of age.However, most studies have shown that women are much more likely to suffer from pathology. This is due to the highly variable hormonal background. The body undergoes severe stress at different periods of life, especially such as pregnancy and menopause.

Diagnostics and treatment

Restoration of the visual apparatus is possible only if the root causes of scotoma are eliminated. Diagnostics is carried out in several ways:

  1. Perimetry. The nature of the visual field is determined using a test object.This can be done using either a special device or a computer. The bottom line is that the test object is placed on a spherical surface. The procedure determines the localization of the defect due to the increased sensitivity of the retina to different colors.
  2. Campimetry. It differs from the previous method only in that the object is placed on a flat plane.
  3. Ophthalmoscopy. The doctor examines the fundus to determine the condition of the optic nerve head and retina.

Computed tomography of the brain, ultrasound of the eyeball, measurement of arterial and intraocular pressure are also used.

It is impossible to get rid of scotoma on your own, especially by resorting to traditional medicine recipes or other dubious methods from the Internet. If the exact cause of the appearance of the dark spot is not determined, then the ophthalmologist cannot prescribe a course of treatment. At the same time, it cannot be called a universal complex therapy. For example, urgent surgery is performed when a retinal detachment or cancer is detected.In case of damage to nerve fibers in the retina or detection of pathology in the brain, the treatment occurs according to the following scenario:

  1. Eliminate the root cause. So, poor blood circulation in the retina is caused by disturbances in the vessels, therefore, it is necessary to start treatment with them. When healthy tissues of the body are attacked by autoantibodies that the immune system itself produces, the help of various specialists may be required, and not only an ophthalmologist – a dermatologist, neurologist, rheumatologist, endocrinologist and others.
  2. Stimulation of regeneration. Magnetic therapy or the use of peptide agents can be quite effective. Discharges of current transmitted along the nerve pathways are capable of causing their restoration.

It is possible to get rid of a dark spot with the help of drugs:

  • biogenic stimulants;
  • vitamin complexes;
  • vasodilators;
  • nicotinic acid.

To normalize the condition of the visual organs with chondrosis, you will need a more active lifestyle – daily physical activity.With arterial hypertension, it is necessary to normalize the pressure indicators. Patients can feel completely healthy. The vessels are capable of adapting to high pressure, while the heart and blood vessels are most often under excessive stress. Be attentive to the symptoms, which are expressed not only by a headache, but also by the appearance of “flies” in front of the eyes, the image becomes blurred.

Prevention is effective to prevent deformation of the visual field. As doctors say, a disease is always easier to prevent than to cure.Therefore, be attentive to any signals from your body.

  • Control your psycho-emotional state.
  • Perform thorough eye hygiene to avoid contamination.
  • Measure blood pressure.
  • Always see a doctor promptly if dark spots appear in the eye.
Physiological Pathological


  • blind spot. Basically, this is the area on the retina that every healthy eye has. It is distinguished by an absolute lack of sensitivity to light;
  • angioscotomes. They are in direct connection with the blind spot. The large blood vessels in the retina, which resemble tree branches, lack photoreceptors.

Physiological scotomas are compensated by binocular vision. When monocular, they may also not be observed due to involuntary micromovements of the eyeballs and the presence of a blind spot in the paracentral region.

Formed by violations of physiological cattle. As a result of damage to the retina, choroid, visual pathways and centers, various pathological processes occur that reduce visual acuity. The internal classification of abnormally abnormal cattle is as follows:

  1. Positive and negative.The former can be seen by the patient himself, and the latter can only be detected with a special examination.
  2. Absolute and relative. The division takes into account the density of the scotoma. The former are characterized by a complete absence of visual perception, and the latter, by its partial weakening, which can be expressed in a decrease in the brightness of the object.

Theater critic about the play “Tartuffe” of the Tyumen BDT

Tartuffe’s crooks at the Tyumen Bolshoi Drama Theater

Alexander Bargman’s play “Tartuffe”, staged at the Tyumen Bolshoi Drama Theater, is three times theatrical.

It begins with a prologue in which the heroes of Moliere’s Tartuffe play a puppet show in front of the curtain based on Moliere’s Don Juan. The opening of the curtain after the prologue turns into a separate theatrical performance, and in addition to the main velvet curtain of the Greek type, parts of the scenery are hidden by three more curtains of the German type.
The set itself, invented by the artist Elena Zhukova, consists of round metal arches filled with white flowers, creating perspective.This blooming world personifies the prosperous house of Orgon, which was caught by the fraudster Tartuffe and some of the petals of the opal and lies underfoot. In the second act, when the father has already chased away his son Damis, succumbing to the tricks of Tartuffe, the arches become bare, the flowers disappear, and only petals remain on the floor, the last reminders of the once happy life in the house.

Emphasizing theatricality, Alexander Bargman includes in the list of characters Pierrot, who is absent from Moliere, making him a kind of guardian of the house.Yegor Medvedev embodies this infernal image through the plastic, invented by the choreographer Nikolai Reutov, and vocals in French.

For all the director’s conceptuality, this is a very “actor’s” performance. It can be seen how the actors “bathe” in the material offered to them. What is the scene of the seduction of Tartuffe (Nikolai Auzin) by Elmira (Sophia Ilyushina), which is played out on a table not covered with a tablecloth. This table is Orgon’s only hideout, overseeing the unmasking of what he believed to be a saint.And the almost pantomime number of the retelling of this scene by Elena Makhneva in the role of Flipota, invented by the directors, is probably one of the most comedic moments of the play. Even in the episodic roles of servants performed by Nikolai Padalko and Vasily Tsivinsky, the inner fullness and biography of the images appears.

In general, Tyumen’s “Tartuffe” is the case when you want to talk about everyone.

Dorina Kristina Tikhonova, a true comedy-romantic coquette, in whose image the actress managed to find not only a lot of funny, but also very “sharp”, primarily through today’s cuts found in the textbook text.

Buffon Valera performed by Alexander Kudrin, each appearance of which is announced by the voice of the director of the play, a real comedic lover, ready to fight with rapiers every minute.

Expression and plasticity of Vitaly Ilyushkin fully translates Damis’s youth and fervor.

An exemplary example of the finest work with poetic text is demonstrated by Zhanna Syrnikova in the role of Madame Pernel.

Sergey Skobelev’s Orgone is a truly tragic hero.Deceived and unhappy in the finale, in the first act he appears as confident and oppressive. And the artist goes this path from one state to another with incredible detail and accuracy.

Speaking about acting, it is impossible not to name Alexander Tikhonov, who embodies Cleant on the stage. The artist finds for this image cutesy intonations that disappear at the moment of the monologue addressed to Orgon, demonstrating the character’s true concern and desire to change the situation.

Turning to the title character, it is important to note that Nikolai Auzin plays not a simple pretender, but an embodied villain, his goal is not Orgon’s house, which he “takes” with ease, a higher goal appears in his actions.In the finale of the play, Nikolai Auzin in a modern bureaucratic suit, shaking his leg, smugly watches the family tragedy in front of the closing curtain.

The conflict between the truth of life and the truth of the theater is the main one in the play. The finale is based on the opposition of the real representative of power and the savior invented by the Orgon family.
The appearance on the stage of the bailiff Loyal (Andrey Voloshenko) changes the established course of things, even Moliere’s poetic lines are replaced by prose, which announces the decision to evict the family from the house.Loyal is the only one of all the characters who carries the truth of life, not covered by a theatrical mask. The officer (Igor Gutmanis), invented by Moliere as a sign of the triumph of justice given by the king, turns into a fantasy in the play, and the character himself becomes surreal. This is indicated by the make-up comparable to that of Pierrot, and the puppetry, which refers to the prologue, where puppet shows were performed in a prosperous house.

The play by Alexander Bargman is about the triumph of Tartuffe, which continues to this day.

Author: Ilya Gubin. Photo by Vadim Balakin.

You can buy tickets at the box office of the Tyumen Concert and Theater Association or on the website.

Loss of visual fields: what to do?

What are the fields of view? Everything you see when you look in front of you and don’t move your head is your field of vision. The picture directly in front of you enters the central field of view. What you do not see clearly on the sides is peripheral. The loss of parts of the central and peripheral vision is an alarming sign.

Vision falls out in different ways. Sometimes a person notices that the picture of the world seems to have been driven into a tunnel, and on the sides it is cut off. Sometimes in both or one eye, vision is lost on the right or left side, leaving only half of the picture. Different reasons lead to different types of loss of vision, which we will talk about in this article.

What disease does the loss of visual fields warn about?

Loss of visual field is not a disease, but a symptom. If there was a loss of visual fields, the reasons may be as follows:

  • Ophthalmic diseases
  • Volumetric processes in the central nervous system
  • Inflammatory diseases of the brain
  • Traumatic brain injury

Only some of the problems are directly related to eye diseases.In this article, we will discuss the common causes of violations, but in each case, the reasons are subtle and specific – after all, the matter lies in the peculiarities of the functioning of the optic nerves and the brain of a particular person. Loss of visual field is a symptom of various diseases, therefore, in no case should you engage in self-diagnosis.

If you notice that something is wrong with your vision, you need to urgently check with a neurologist and ophthalmologist. Diagnosis of vision in our clinic will help determine if there are eye problems, or the reason lies elsewhere.

Loss of visual field is a symptom of various diseases, therefore, in no case should you engage in self-diagnosis.

What does the narrowing of the peripheral boundaries of vision say

With this defect, the ring of blindness begins to take possession of the boundaries of vision, approaching ever closer to the center of the eye. The field of vision can narrow evenly and unevenly. With a uniform narrowing, equal parts from all sides fall out of the field of view. If uneven, more can fall out on one side than on the other.

The reason for the uniform narrowing of the peripheral boundaries of vision can be lesions of the optic nerve, pigmentary degeneration of the retina.

Uneven narrowing of the boundaries can develop due to glaucoma, retinal detachment, optic nerve atrophy, diseases of the central retinal artery.

What does the loss of a part of the field of view indicate

If separate areas of vision have fallen out in two eyes, this is called hemianopsia. Typically, hemianopsia affects both eyes, although rarely appears in only one.If the visual fields fall out in only one eye, this may be a signal of damage to the optic nerve or retina. If both eyes are affected, the causes are different:

Loss of right visual fields indicates damage to the left optic tract. Loss of left visual fields – about damage to the right.
  1. Homonymous hemianopsia. In this case, at the same time, an area falls out in the region of the temple in one eye and at the bridge of the nose – in the other. Half or part of the vision may be lost in each eye.Loss of right visual fields indicates damage to the left optic tract. Loss of left visual fields – about damage to the right optic tract.
  2. Heteronymous hemianopsia. With this violation in both eyes, the visual fields fall out symmetrically. Temporal or nasal fields may fall out.

Such a partial loss of the visual field indicates a disturbance in the functioning of the brain. These can be tumors, the consequences of a stroke and other diseases affecting the optic tract and chiasm – the place of intersection of the optic nerve fibers in the brain.

What blind spots are talking about

Blind spots are called scotomas. In the area of ​​the scotoma, vision may be completely lost or blurred. If a person himself is able to feel that there is a blind spot in his eye, this is a positive scotoma, the cause of which may be damage to the optic nerve. If the patient does not understand that his visual field is imperfect, the scotoma is called negative and is diagnosed. Often the cause is a malfunction of the structures of the brain.

You can also understand the cause of a blind spot by its shape and location:

  • If a scotoma appears in or near the visual center, macular or optic nerve disease may be the cause.
  • If a scotoma surrounds the central portion of the visual field with a ring, it may indicate retinal pigmentary degeneration.
  • If the blind spot is located at the edges of the visual field, problems may be with the choroid.

Scotomas are more likely to report damage to the eye than to the brain.

How to understand that the field of view has dropped out

If you notice that the visual fields have dropped out, you need to immediately consult a neurologist and ophthalmologist. However, the problem of diagnosing a loss of visual fields is that a person does not always himself realize that vision is impaired. Get diagnosed, even if there is a slight suspicion of poor vision.Especially if you have recently suffered or are suffering an illness that leads to loss of visual fields: stroke, swelling, glaucoma, nervous strain, etc.

There are indirect signs of impairment: migraine, flare-ups, haze or pressure in the eyes, dizziness and disruption of the vestibular apparatus. Their appearance is also a reason to be diagnosed by a doctor. Starting treatment on time will relieve uncertainty and anxiety.


  1. Loss of visual fields is not a disease in itself, but a symptom of other diseases.
  2. Areas of vision can fall out not only due to eye damage, but also due to brain diseases.
  3. Each disturbance in the functioning of the eye or brain causes a specific problem with the visual field.
  4. Visual impairment – serious reason to see a doctor.

Eyes are complex tools, and their malfunction indicates serious internal problems. Loss of vision is one of the signals to watch out for.

Ponchielli’s opera La Gioconda

La Gioconda


Premiere date





Ponchielli. “La Gioconda”. Suicidio (M. Callas)

Opera in four acts by Amilcar Ponchielli on the libretto (in Italian) “Tobio Gorrio” (anagram by Arrigo Boito), based on the drama “Angelo, Tyrant of Padua” by Victor Hugo.


JOCONDA, singer (soprano)
BLIND (CHEKA), her mother (contralto)
DUKE ALVISE BADOERO, one of the three members of the Supreme Council (of the Inquisition) (bass)
LAURA ADORNO, his wife (mezzo-soprano)
ENZO GRIMALDO, Genoese patrician (tenor)
BARNABA, singer, informer of the Inquisition (baritone)
ZUANE, gondolier IZPO (bass)

Time of action: XVII century.
Scene: Venice.
First performance: Milan, Teatro alla Scala, 8 April 1876.

La Gioconde is over a century old, but it still remains one of the most popular operas ever written. Her plot, based on the drama by Victor Hugo, formed the basis of operas written other composers, both before and after Ponchielli. Russian the composer Cesar Cui created his own version entitled “Angelo”. His opera was also staged in 1876, for several months before “La Gioconda”.But only Ponchielli’s opera stayed on theatrical stage. The reason for this is undoubtedly the exciting the passion of her music and in her wonderful melodies. Among them “Cielo e mar “(” Sky and Sea “),” Suicido “(” Suicide “) and the super popular “Dance of the Hours”.

The setting for Hugo’s drama is Padua. Arrigo Boito, famous the librettist, the author of the libretto of this opera, moved the action to Venice XVII century. He also changed the name, and if Hugo’s drama was called “Angelo, Tyrant of Padua”, the opera received one of the most ironic names that have ever been given to the works of this genre: “la gioconda” literally translated from Italian means “cheerful woman”.It is unlikely, however, there is an opera heroine who suffers more severely than the one who bears this name. But in the annals of the lyrical scene there are many heroines who could challenge the honor of being considered the most intolerably suffering.

The introduction to the opera – the prelude – is rather short, based on contralto aria from the first act of “Voce di donna o d’angelo” (“An angel sent down from heaven, sent down me from villainy, saves”). Each of the actions has its own title: action I – “Lion’s fall “; action II – “Rosary”; act III – “The Golden House”; Act IV – Orfano Canal.


The curtain rises. We see the area of ​​the Doge’s Palace. She is decorated with the occasion of the holiday. In the depths – the staircase of the giants, the Cathedral of St. Mark. On the left is the public scribe’s office. Spring sunny day. Scene filled with walking people. Different masks, Moors and dalmatians, sailors, monks, harlequins and others. Leaning against the pillar and Barnaba stands watching the passers-by; hanging over his shoulder guitar. On one wall of the square, at the Lion’s mouth, carved in black the inscription on the marble in letters: “Secret denunciations for the Inquisition.Legal protection and impunity ”.

The opera opens with the joyful Feste e pano (Bread! Spectacles! “). Everyone is having fun at the party. Barnaba, dirty and disgusting (in the opera, he is a villain and a spy, reporting everything Inquisition), informs the people that the regatta begins. When all rush to the pier, he gloomily utters: “They sing on their graves! Death (while he points to the underground passages of the prison) with does not take his eyes off them! ”

The heroine appears. This is a very beautiful singer.She has a nickname La Gioconda, because she has a cheerful disposition. Now she accompanies his blind mother, Chieka. The upper part of the face is blind by the eyes are covered with a bandage. Mother and daughter sing a small, very gentle duet. Barnaba, as it becomes clear, has a passion for Gioconda. Now he hid behind a column, his thoughts are insidious. But here he is jumps out from behind the column and blocks Gioconda’s path. “Who are you?” – asks Mona Lisa. “The one who is loved, who will not pass by.” But Gioconda does not want to have anything to do with him.“Your face is terrifying and disgust. I despise you, ”Gioconda tells him. He is embittered and plotting revenge. The people bring in the winner of the regatta in triumph, holding a green banner in his hand – a sign of victory. He is greeted women, sailors, children with flowers. Barnaba notices Zuane. He tells Zuana that Gioconda’s blind mother is a witch and that she sent the evil eye on him, Zuane. Here is the reason for Zuane’s defeat regatta. Moreover: “Your boat will be your coffin!” – predicts Barnaba to the gondolier. The crowd turns to Chieka, and everyone thinks what the blind sees.Everyone in excitement exclaims: “We are death to her we will arrange. Burn the sorceress! ” But she is saved in time by the hero of the opera, Enzo Grimaldo. This is a rather mysterious figure: his past and the present is confusing, and the future is very vague and problematic. First, he was expelled from Venice, and now he is here in a foreign guise – in the clothes of a Dalmatian sailor, so as not to be recognized. Secondly, he is secretly engaged to Gioconda. Thirdly, once he was betrothed to Laura. Now she is the wife of Duke Alvise Badoero, but still loves Enzo.

The crowd is becoming more and more aggressive. At the door of the palace appears the Duke himself and Laura. La Gioconda prays to the Duke to save her old mother. The Duke and Laura protect the mother of Gioconda and Enzo from angry people and give them shelter. As a token of gratitude, the blind handing the rosary to Laura. At this moment she sings her wonderful aria “Voce di donna” (“An angel from heaven sent down to me from villainy saves “).

Meanwhile, Laura and Enzo exchange loving glances, which do not go unnoticed by Baraba.This, he decides, is his chance. When everyone else disperses, he approaches Enzo and tells him that knows who he is – outlawed and exiled from Venice patrician who arrived in the city disguised. And – to great amazement Enzo – Barnaba promises to bring him to his ship that very night Laura. Enzo is happy, but suspicious. And for this there is every reason. As soon as he leaves, Barnaba turns to the scribe, who sits on the square and carries out such orders of the townspeople, and dictates to him an anonymous letter to the “secret head of the Inquisition” (that is, needless to say to the Duke of Alvise).In it, he informs about upcoming night meeting of Laura, his wife, with Enzo. Denunciation signed: “The Lion’s Mouth.” However, La Gioconda overhears him. Her heart is broken, and the first act of the opera ends with her complaints, resounding over the evening prayers offered by the people.


Night … Enzo Grimaldo’s brigantine anchored in the desert the coast of an uninhabited island in the Fusin lagoon. Colorful music Ponchielli perfectly conveys the mood of the seascape.Starry sky; the moon is shining. In the foreground there is a small altar to the Madonna with a lamp pouring out a reddish light. On the stern of the ship it is written his name is “Hecate”. The sailors sing their night song – marinarescu. Barnaba, the Inquisition informer, disguised as a sailor, appears. He sings a cheerful ballad, but his true goal is to find out the size of the Enzo team. Soon Enzo himself comes out on deck. He tells the sailors that he will be on patrol tonight, and sends all sailors to sleep. Left alone, he sings his big aria “Cielo e mar” (“Sky and Sea”).He is waiting for his beloved – here in open sea, under the starry sky. But when Laura comes here she soon falls prey to Barnaba’s machinations, who, in fact, brought her to the ship by boat. Sailing away back, he ominously says: “I wish you happiness!” Should be great love duet of Enzo and Laura. The duet ends and Enzo says Laura, that he must leave in order to prepare everything for sailing. Meanwhile, Laura in a wonderful prayer to the Virgin Mary (“Stella del marinar” – “Star of the Sea”), – begs for protection.

Gioconda appears (in a mask), and between the two women there is angry scene. Gioconda wants to hit Laura with a dagger, but in the last moment stops: “For you, beauty, I will find an execution different “. And so Gioconda informs Laura that in the boat, which is now rushing to the ship, sailing … her husband! Hearing about this, Laura takes out the rosary, which Gioconda’s mother gave her, and again begins to pray. La Gioconda, amazed at the sight of the rosary, immediately remembers that saving service that Laura rendered her.Now all of her the attitude towards the opponent is changing. She takes off her mask and is very quickly puts it on to Laura. So she helps her to quickly hide on the shore behind the ship; she does everything so that Laura can be saved. And now that Enzo comes out on deck again to find Laura, on the shore he is met by an angry Mona Lisa. In this moment cannon volleys are heard from the duke’s flotilla. Enzo realizes that all is lost to him. In despair, he throws a burning one into the hold of the ship torch, and he himself rushes from the deck into the sea.The ship explodes.


Scene 1 takes place in the palace of Duke Alvise, known as the name “Golden House”. Room in the palace; lighted lamp. WITH one side is a figure in ancient knightly armor. Here is the duke plotting at the festival to commit a cruel revenge on his unfaithful wife, Laura. He explains this in a dramatic monologue (“Si! Morir ella de ‘! ” – “Yes! Must die! “). He gestures to adjoining halls: “Let the joy, joyfulness, captivate everyone there, let the dying sobbing drown out the thunder of the ball.When outside the doors the castle is full of melodic charm night serenades, he calling his wife. She appears to him in a luxurious ball gown. V the next big duet, the duke throws an accusation of treason against Laura, in the fact that she forgot her oath of marital fidelity. “Get ready die!” The duke shouts in anger. Laura’s tears and pleas are in vain: “Oh have mercy! And for those who are guilty, such a punishment is too heavy. ” Alvise pulls Laura to the door, closed by a curtain. He is energetic throws it away and points to the hearse, ready to receive her: “You see, here is the marriage bed!” A chorus of cheering guests sounds offstage (barcarolle “Fun sounds fly over the waves, but the response of torment those songs sound “).Alvise gives Laura a bottle of poison and orders that she would accept it before the serenade was over. Alvise leaves, leaving Laura alone. But he underestimated our heroine, Gioconda, who, foreseeing that something like this might happen, secretly entered the palace, took refuge in it, preparing the necessary drug. She quickly appears in front of Laura, snatches from her a bottle of poison and gives her his own, explaining that if you drink it content, then she will only seem dead, but she will not die for real.Then Laura takes the bottle and lies down in the coffin. La Gioconda pours real poison into his own bottle, and the empty one, what he gave Laura Alviza, he leaves on the table. So when the serenade ends and Alvise returns to see what happened, he is sure: “Everything has happened! The bottle is empty! Death closed her eyes! ” Now you can call guests to tickle their nerves with a shocking surprise.

Scene 2 . Luxurious hall next to the room where Laura lies. Hall beautifully decorated for the ball.Deep to the left is a wide entrance arch, the same to the right, but all covered with a curtain. In the left wall, closer to proscenium, third door. Enter patricians, ladies, masks. Alvise welcomes guests, including the Mona Lisa. To entertain guests the duke invited the dancers: “Any of them will amaze us with beauty. They the clock represents itself. ” The famous “Dance of the Hours” is being performed (Morning hours, Day hours and finally Night hours). At the end of the dance is Barnaba; he drags the old blind mother of Gioconda, whom he caught “witchcraft” in the chambers of the ducal palace.Blind explains that she prayed for the deceased. Everyone is at a loss: who is died? At this moment, a funeral bell ringing is heard. “For whom are calling? ” – asks one of the guests. “According to Laura!” – answers Barnaba. At this critical moment, Enzo, while wearing a mask, rips it off. and discovers himself (it was he who asked this question). Duke in indignation angrily demands that he be arrested. Sounds great ensemble number – everyone expresses their own feelings by about this difficult situation. La Gioconda, which is also here, offers himself to Barnabe, if only her beloved Enzo was saved, and, naturally, he agrees.Then, when everyone is quiet, Alvise makes a shocking gesture: he demonstrates his wife who cheated on him. The curtain is pulled back – and everyone can see Laura in her coffin. “I killed her!” The duke shouts. Enzo throws himself on duke with a dagger, but at this moment the guard intervenes, and Enzo grabbing. This is how this action ends. And in such a conclusion there is a great deal of dramatic irony, since this the moment neither the Duke, nor Enzo, nor Barnaba know that Gioconda is still once saved her rival Laura.


The last act of the opera takes place in an old, already decaying palace on the island of Judekka. This is the place where La Gioconda lives and where she secretly ferried her rival Laura. She also saved the life of his beloved, but he could hide here only with her, Gioconda, Laura’s rival, since she herself was destined stay with the hated Barnaba. But things are even for the Mona Lisa even worse (if worse is possible) – she lost her beloved blind mother.Indeed, she had not seen her since that awful evening at Alvise. When the curtain rises, we see a screen in the right corner, behind which bed. At the bottom there is a large open door, behind which the lagoon and illuminated St. Mark’s square are visible. On the wall image of the Madonna and the cross. Table; there is a lighted lamp on it and lantern, bottles of poison, dagger. Scattered on the sofa are different theatrical costumes of the Mona Lisa. Mona Lisa alone. She is immersed in dark thoughts. People knock on her room. These are the singers they brought insensitive Laura and now they put her on a bed behind the screen.La Gioconda thanks her singing friends for participating, and since she already the second night he cannot find his beloved mother, then asks them to help in looking for her. They promise their help and leave. Mona Lisa remains one. She looks at the dagger, strokes it, then takes a bottle of poison. The thought of suicide comes to her. In the next big scene (“Suicide”) she contemplates committing suicide.

Behind the stage, the voices of two gondoliers are heard. “Hey there in the gondola! What do you hear something new? ” One shouts. “There’s a dead body in Orfano’s canal” – answers him, also from afar, another.La Gioconda overwhelmed many feelings – contradictory thoughts about Laura saved by her, about missing mother and – most importantly – unrequited love for Enzo, at the end ends up losing composure; in despair, she falls to the table.

Enzo enters. He wants to know where Laura is. La Gioconda tries to hold him, he breaks out so that “over the grave of the saint (Laura, of course) end your suffering. ” At this moment, La Gioconda says ironically: “Well then! Fulfill your desire, faithful knight! Tomb Laura is empty – I hid her! ” She swears on the cross that it is truth.Enzo grabs Gioconda – he is angry and ready to stab her dagger. La Gioconda would be glad to die. But at this moment Laura wakes up after drinking a drug; she comes out because of her hiding and throws himself into the arms of Enzo. He does not believe his eyes. La Gioconda covers her face with a mantle, and Laura at first accepts her for the shadow of Alvise. But now Laura approaches her, and then La Gioconda reveals her face. Laura admits that her life she owes La Gioconda. The same serenade is heard offstage, under which Laura was ordered to commit suicide.This time she serves as an introduction to the dramatic tercet. Lovers bless their savior suffering from hopeless love and are removed in a small gondola, which she also prepared for them, with a team – her singers friends – of two people. To hide Laura, Gioconda covers her with her cloak. At this moment Mona Lisa sees beads on Laura and recalls the prophecy with which her blind the mother passed them on (in the first act) to her savior (Laura): “In the hour of fate, the good Creator will save you, I know… “-” So happened! ” – says Gioconda. Laura and Enzo leave.

Now the unfortunate Mona Lisa recalls her agreement with Barnaba. She intends to flee the castle, but Barnaba, who appears, blocks her way. He demands the fulfillment of an oath; he wants a reward. Yes, Gioconda will reward him, but first she must change into her best dress. She goes out to do it. She dresses in her the best theatrical dress and at the same time discreetly arms dagger. She comes back and sings the siren song.Barnaba looks forward to the delight of owning the Gioconda. “Did you want my body, the devil? So on take it! ” – says Gioconda and plunges the dagger into himself heart. Shocked, he exclaims: “Wait! Wait! Again ridiculed! .. “And, bending down to the very corpse of Gioconda, shouts in her ear in a fierce voice: “The old woman insulted me. I drowned her! ” La Gioconda – for the first time in the entire opera, the pacified – no longer hears it. Barnaba with a suppressed cry of rage rushes into the street.

Henry W. Simon (translated by A.Maykapara)

The place of La Gioconda on Boito’s libretto is unusual in history, and it should be said about it in particular. After Aida and up to Verdi’s Othello, it was the only opera whose artistic value was recognized by the public. Ponchielli acted partly as a young successor of the Verdi school, the school of “melodists” who belonged to the “parish” of the Ricordi publishing house, which, together with the Lucca publishing house, opposed the Avenirists and Quartettists. The latter were clearly influenced by the transalpine instrumental schools; among them were Stefano Gobatti, Franco Faccio and the same Boito, supported by the critic “Perseverans” Filippo Filippi.After the success of the “Lithuanians” in 1874, who wrested Ponchielli from the provincial isolation in which he was in Piacenza, the publisher Giulio Ricordi, who possessed an unerring instinct, decided on a more ambitious undertaking: to organize the cooperation of such a librettist “intellectual” as Boito and the impulsive , but by nature a gifted musician, like Ponchielli, who, moreover, relied on a solid basis of composing technique. Ricordi’s idea was all the more solid because the Quartettists had very little success and the most talented of them, that is, Faccio, turned to conducting, an area in which he achieved historical results.

The meeting between Boito and Ponchielli marked the first attempt at a collaboration that Ricordi publishers would later perfect to make up the Boito and Verdi pair. Thus was born “La Gioconda”, which had a triumphant success. The dissatisfied author subjected the opera to further finishing and in 1880 presented the final version at La Scala, also with some success. This version included “La Gioconda” in the repertoire of major vocalists. Her influence was significant, especially on verism.

The sublimity of the melody, the ardent passion of feelings (as in the aria “Heaven and Sea”) were combined with more complex forms of character analysis, in which there was a clear influence of the French style.The audience and performers gave preference to those vocal episodes that, although they demanded great dedication from the singer, rewarded for work, which sometimes seemed overwhelming. The plastic recitation faithfully follows the dramatic accents of the stormy and upbeat libretto. In addition, the composer does not abandon psychological research, most of it very successful, in which the orchestra (so superbly accompanying the famous dance of hours) helps him. One of the most famous examples is Gioconda’s monologue “Suicide !.. “, Opening the second scene of the fourth act. We can say that in character he resembles Verdi’s monologues, going back to the aria “You, who knew vanity” from “Don Carlos”, but also anticipating the future “Othello”. Singing here is engendered by the orchestral development of thematism, which is very eloquent and expressive. Mona Lisa’s voice reflects a series of psychologically convincing modulations. Memories, echoes of the past are embodied in a major scale, attract to themselves, make a decision under the influence of the torment of the present, expressed in a minor key; this agony turns into a major determination within the original key of the aria (minor): the tension solemnly subsides and the difficult decision to end one’s life is made.Some of the opera’s features fit into the cruel theater of prejudice: its stormy, bloody character seems to leave no room for too subtle nuances. But in La Gioconda, they appear to be part of the contrasting elements that met Ponchielli’s intention, giving him the opportunity to act as the successor of a magnificent tradition.

G. Marchesi (translated by E. Greceanii)

Creation history

Ponchielli, like other Italian composers, was fond of Hugo’s drama and wrote two operas based on his plots – La Gioconda, which brought him long-term worldwide success, and Marion Delorme, which became his last completed work.Victor Hugo (1802-1885), head of the frantic French romantics, shook the foundations of French theater with his plays. At the premieres, there were clashes between supporters of the old, classical, and new, romantic art; the sharp denunciation of the aristocracy and the glorification of the common man caused censorship bans. A freedom-loving spirit, opposition to tyranny, sympathy for the disadvantaged are also characteristic of the day of the drama Angelo, Tyrant of Padua (1835), which forty years later inspired the creation of the libretto by Arrigo Boito (1842-1918), who wrote under the pseudonym Tobia Gorrio (an anagram of his name and surname) …He was gifted in many ways. A student of the Milan Conservatory, who entered the composition class of A. Mazzucato when Ponchielli was finishing it, the author of poems and articles on music, a participant in Garibaldi’s liberation campaign, Boito in 1868 staged the opera Mephistopheles on his own libretto, the premiere of which he conducted himself. Stunned by a noisy failure, for several years he was mainly engaged in librettis and translations – including the operas by Wagner, “Ruslan and Lyudmila” by Glinka. His first libretto, Nero (1870), was intended by Verdi, but was later used by Boito himself.The next, five years later, was the libretto of La Gioconda, and in the year of Ponchielli’s death, Boito’s best libretto, newly created for Verdi, Othello, was completed.

In La Gioconda, each act, like Hugo’s, has a title, but different from that in the play. The librettist softened the tyrannical, political motives inherent in Hugo and brought to the fore the drama of love and jealousy of two rival women, the passion for which grips three men. It is no coincidence that the opera is titled after the loving and jealous Gioconda, a street singer (for Hugo, Tizbe, who became a famous actress), while the play is named after the ruler of Padua, Angelo Malipieri, governor of the Venetian Republic.Boito moved the action from Padua in 1549 to Venice of the next century and replaced the viceroy, trembling before the secret power of Venice, the omnipotent Alvise Badoero, a member of the Grand Council – the main legislative body of Venice, elected from among the noblest citizens of the most ancient families. If Hugo, in his own words, wanted to “compare … two stern and mournful images – a woman in society, a woman outside of society; … to protect one from despotism, the other from contempt ”, then in the opera the patrician Laura, the wife of Alvise, is, in fact, a minor character, and all attention is focused on the street singer.But Boito presented Barnaba as the mainspring of intrigue. He is called a street singer, but there is something devilish about him, reminiscent of the typical Boito heroes – Mephistopheles and Iago. At Hugo’s, he was sent to the heroine by the rector of the Venetian Cathedral of San Marco under the guise of a feeble-minded guitarist, a beggar wanderer, whom she sheltered out of pity. In fact, he is a spy for the Council of Ten, a terrifying political body in Venice that ruled through a widespread network of espionage, nameless denunciations and secret assassinations.He is not at all in love with the comedian Tizbe (as in Barnab’s opera in La Gioconda), but with the wife of the tyrant of Padua, who rejected the pitiful commoner, after which he plotted revenge. And if in Hugo a just punishment befalls him – he dies in a duel with a noble hero, then in Boito justice in the finale by no means triumphs: the villain remains alive. Having drowned the mother of Gioconda in the canal, causing the heroine to commit suicide, he, as the remark says, “rushes into the street with a suppressed cry of rage” – perhaps to commit new atrocities.Boito’s cruel denouement, so beloved by Hugo, takes on a different moral connotation. Gioconda’s consolation before death is the deep gratitude of the rival she saved, the admiration of her beloved for her selflessness, while Tizbe in the drama dies at his hand: unable to live without love, she provokes him to strike with a dagger. The librettist brought onto the stage the blind mother of Gioconda, who had died long ago in the play (the viewer learned about her from the heroine’s story about her impoverished childhood, about the miraculous deliverance of her mother from execution, thanks to the intercession of an unknown patrician).Hugo does not mention his mother’s blindness. It is also important to change the genre of the work. In the libretto, mass scenes with an abundance of dances are widely developed (street carnival in acts I and IV, a masquerade in the palace in III, the songs of sailors in II), which contrast with tragic events with their carefree merriment. For Hugo, however, events unfold in small rooms – the rooms of the palace, the shack of the murderers, and even Act I, which takes place in the festively illuminated garden in front of the palace, has a chamber character.

The premiere of La Gioconda on April 8, 1876 at the Teatro alla Scala in Milan was a huge success, which was repeated during Ponchielli’s lifetime on many stages in Europe, South and North America.


La Gioconda is a bright performance full of violent passions and contrasts. It is close to the traditions of Verdi’s operas, although it lacks their uniqueness.

In Act I, the Blind’s romance “Oh, this angelic voice, it saves me from the shackles” forms the light, pacified center of the stormy mass scene; the second theme of the romance – the melodious theme of the rosary – appears more than once in the opera. At the beginning of Act II, two solo numbers stand out. Barcarole Barnaba “Ah! We believe sometimes we will accept ”with an angular rhythm and a sharp juxtaposition of piano and forte, the chorus picks up.Enzo’s dreamy romance “Heaven and Sea” is warmed by a warm, sincere feeling; expressive lyrical melody of wide breathing made it one of the most popular numbers of the opera. In the second scene of the third act, there is another popular, but not vocal, but instrumental number, “Dance of the Hours”. This charming, delicately instrumented ballet suite consists of four episodes before the dramatic finale. Mysteriously, the bells are barely audible in the morning hours. Great dance is inherent in the dance of the daytime hours.Thoughtfully leaving the evening hours with a distinct ticking of tall wooden instruments. The dance of the night hours is widespread: slow episodes with melodious themes are replaced by vortex, impetuous ones, reminiscent of bacchanalia. La Gioconda’s aria “I will die!” at the beginning of Act IV – the culmination of the entire opera. Nowhere else did Ponchielli manage to achieve such a tragic intensity, to find a declamatory melody of such emotional force, so organically developing to a widely sung climax.

A. Konigsberg

This opera by Ponchielli was a great success with the public.And nowadays it is included in the repertoires of leading theaters. Spectacular scenes in the spirit of a grand opera and winning parts determined the successful fate of the composition. The “plug-in” ballet episode “Dance of the Hours” was also widely known. It was first staged in Russia in 1883 (Petersburg, Italian troupe). In 1885 the Russian premiere of the opera took place in Kazan (P. Medvedev’s private enterprise). The part of La Gioconda was the first major success of the outstanding singer of the 20th century Callas (1947). Among the productions in recent years is La Scala (1996/97).

Discography: CD – Decca. Conductor Gardelli, La Gioconda (Tebaldi), Enzo (Bergonzi), Barnabas (Merrill), Alvise (Guzelev), Laura (Horn). Decca. Conductor Bartoletti, La Gioconda (Caballe), Enzo (Pavarotti), Barnabas (Milns), Alvise (Gyaurov), Laura (Baltsa).

E. Tsodokov

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