Last Updated on May 8, 2015, by eNotes Editorial. Word Count: 442
Consuelo (kohn-SWAY-loh), a gifted singer who, before her mother dies, promises to marry a young musician named Anzoleto. Consuelo is a charming and beautiful woman, in addition to being a fine artist. After she finds that her betrothed is untrue to her, she becomes a companion to Amelia, the niece of Count Rudolstadt. The count’s son, Albert, falls in love with her and tells her that she is the only person who can save him from insanity. She helps her rival, Corilla, give birth to an illegitimate child the girl has by Anzoleto. Just before Albert dies, she marries him, but she refuses any of the fortune that comes to her as a result. She goes to Berlin and becomes the idol of Frederick the Great.
Niccolo Antonio Porpora
Niccolo Antonio Porpora (NEE-koh-loh ahn-TOH-nee-oh pohr-POH-rah), Consuelo’s music teacher and godfather. He is determined to make a great artist out of her and, by his duplicity, manages to keep her away from Albert until it is too late for her to help him.
Count Albert Rudolstadt
Count Albert Rudolstadt, the son of a nobleman, who calls Consuelo by name the first time he hears her sing, although no one has told him her true name. He is convinced that Consuelo is his salvation and that no one else can save him from the curse of insanity. When Porpora writes to tell Albert that he will never consent to Consuelo’s marriage to the young nobleman, Albert weakens and dies, after begging Consuelo to marry him so that his soul can find peace.
Anzoleto (ahn-zoh-LEH-toh), the poor young musician whom Consuelo has promised to marry. When Consuelo’s success becomes greater than his, he tries to assure his position in the theater by pretending to be in love with her rival, Corilla. Porpora dislikes Anzoleto, and he contrives to have Consuelo find Anzoleto and Corilla together. Anzoleto fathers Corilla’s child and is never heard from again.
Count Rudolstadt, a Bohemian nobleman, Albert’s father. He is willing to consent to Consuelo’s marriage to Albert in order to save his son.
Corilla (koh-REEL-lah), a singer and Consuelo’s rival, both in the theater and in Anzoleto’s affections. Corilla does not know that Consuelo, who was disguised as a boy at the time, had helped her with the birth of her child.
Joseph Haydn, the composer, whom Consuelo meets on the road to Vienna. She takes him along to be a pupil of Porpora.
Amelia, the niece of Count Rudolstadt. Betrothed to Albert, she fears him because he is thought to be mad.