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As soon as he had finished the finale of Turandot [1925-6], Alfano began working with political journalist and man of letters Arturo Rossato, [Vicenza 1882-1942]. He offered Alfano a libretto in one act, Madonna Imperia, based on La belle Impéria, by Honoré de Balzac. The fair lady of high society Imperia enjoys the protection of the chancellor of Ragusa and lives a life of pleasure in Constance among prelates and nobles and bewitches one of the bishop of Bordeaux's young choristers, Filippo Mala, who declares his love for her and has to sing her a song as though he were a troubadour. This love arouses the jealousy of Ragusa, who makes Filippo go away and leave Imperia to him, but the passion between Imperia and Filippo wins out and the opera ends with an erotic encounter between the two offstage.