Saturday, April 28, 2012

The Magic Flute

I love the opera and take every chance I can to go and to bring my kids along. This week I got to take my youngest son to see The Magic Flute By: Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart. It was spectacular! For those who do not know anything  about this opera here is a quick synopsis.

Setting:  Ancient Egypt, Legendary Times

Act 1:   An imaginary Egypt. Three Ladies attend on the Queen of the Night save the fainting Prince Tamino from a serpent. When they leave to tell the Queen, the birdcatcher, Papageno, bounces in and boasts to Tamino that it was he who slew the serpent. The Ladies return to give Tamino a portrait of the Queen's daughter, Pamina, whop they say in enslaved by the evil Sarasto, and they padlock Papageno's mouth shut for lying. The Queen, appearing in a burst of thunder, laments the loss of her daughter: she charges Tamino with Pamina's rescue. The Ladies hand a magic flute to Tamino and magic silver bells to Papageno to ensure their safety, appointing Three Genii to guide them. Sarastro's Moorish slave Monostatos pursues Pamina but is frightened away by the feather-covered Papageno, who tells Pamina that Tamino loves her adn intends to save her. Led to the Temple of Sarasto, Tamino is advised by a High Priest that it is the Queen, not Sarastro, who is evil. Hearing that Pamina is safe, Tamino charms the animals with his flute, then rushes to follow the sounds of Papageno's pipes. Monostatos and his retainers chase Papgeno and Pamina but are rendered helpless by Papageno's magic bells.  Srastro, entering in ceremony, promises Pamina eventual freedom and punishes Monostatos. Pamina is enchanted by a glimpse of Tamino, who is led into the temple with Papageno.

Act II:  Sarastro tells his priest that Tamino will undergo initiation rites. Sworn to silence, Tamino is impervious to the temptations of the Queen Ladies, who have no trouble derailing the cheerful Papageno from his course of virtue. The Queen of the Night dismisses Monostatos, whom she finds trying to kiss the sleeping Pamina, and gives her daughter a dagger with which to murder Sarastro. The gourmand Papageno is just as quick to break a new oath of fasting, and he jokes with a flirtatious old lady, who vanishes when asked her name. Tamino remains steadfast, breaking Pamina's heart; she cannot understand his silence.The priests inform Tamino that he has only 2 more trials to complete his initiation. Papageno is eliminated but settles for the old lady, who turns into a young Papagena when resigned Papageno promises to be faithful. She disappears however. After the Genii save the disparaging Pamina from suicide, she finds Tamino and walk with him through the ordeals by water and fire, protected by the use of his magic bells, which summon Papagena. The two plan for the future and move into a bird's nest. The Queen of the Night, her Three Ladies and Monostatos attack the temple but are defeated and banished. Sarastro joins Pamina dn Tamino as the throng hails Isis and Osiris, the triumph of courage, virtue and wisdom.  

Our Opinion: 

Mozart’s delightful, adventurous, and slightly daffy opera that tests the limits of loyalty and love is mesmerizing  production. From giant serpents and hot air balloons to magical monarchs and mysterious cults, this opera was  extraordinary! My 5 year old LOVED it and clapped and cheered all the way through. Want more? Click on the title at the top and watch it for yourself via You Tube!

Coming Up: 

Dr. Miracle
Jack and the Beanstalk and the Dallas Children's Theater

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