The story is heavy on melodrama. After an appealing choral scene for the contented Gypsies, an old man (here the stentorian bass Kevin Thompson) tells a somber tale of a woman he once loved who ran off with a man from another camp. Aleko (the sturdy bass Stefan Szkafarowsky), who is married to the winsome young Zemfira (the dark-toned soprano Inna Dukach), says he would never put up with such a betrayal. But Zemfira has fallen for a dashing young lover (the bright tenor Jason Karn) and flaunts her affair in Aleko’s face. After an anguished aria of despair, a highlight of the score, Aleko kills the young lovers and is banished from the camp.
If I need to tell you who wrote that, you haven't been paying attention.