12 March 2014

Opera Blog: Boston Lyric Opera’s Version of Verdi’s “Rigoletto”

BLO’s version of Rigoletto returns the opera to its original historical context. The dramatic structure of the story is framed by two necessary conditions: the world in which a ruler has absolute power over life and death, and a world in which the curse of a father is to be believed and feared. Verdi was […]

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10 March 2014

Opera Blog: “Rigoletto” Production History

Verdi’s Rigoletto is based on Victor Hugo’s 1832 play Le Roi s’amuse (The King Amuses Himself), which centers on the excesses of a cynical and ruthless king who revels in the cruel treatment of his courtiers, particularly his jester. The play was meant to depict the story of Francis I of France (1494–1547) and his […]

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15 January 2014

Meet the Dramaturg – Conversation with Magda Romanska

In a January 2014 Boston Globe article, BLO’s Dramaturg, Dr. Magda Romanska, was quoted saying that “the rigid division of roles (director/dramaturg/playwright)” or in the case of an opera, the stage director, dramaturg, and librettist “becomes more and more blurred as people move across boundaries” and begin to work together. When we posted the article […]

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20 November 2013

Opera Blog: The Background Story Behind “Lizzie Borden”

Lizzie Borden took an axe, Gave her mother forty whacks. When she saw what she had done, Gave her father forty-one. THE MURDER AND THE TRIAL In August 1892, Fall River, Massachusetts, a prosperous town of 75,000, was rocked by a gruesome double murder. Seventy year old Andrew Borden, a miserly and wealthy self-made man […]

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15 November 2013

Opera Blog: A Conversation with Cheree Carlson about “Lizzie Borden”

BLO Dramaturg Magda Romanska talks to Cheree Carlson, a professor of Communication and Gender Studies at Arizona State University. Professor Carlson is an expert on issues of gender and media representation, and the author of a book, The Crimes of Womanhood: Defining Femininity in a Court of Law, that analyzes the ways in which cultural […]

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4 October 2013

Opera Blog: The Background Story, Symbolism and Legacy of Mozart’s “The Magic Flute”

There are countless hypotheses as to the original source of The Magic Flute. Suggested sources include Carlo Gozzi’s fables, which were popular in the Vienna of the 1780s; Chrétien de Troyes’ twelfth-century Arthurian romance Yvain, which was translated by Mozart’s fellow Mason Karl Joseph Michaeler, and in which the hero is rescued by three ladies […]

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1 October 2013

Opera Blog: “The Magic Flute”: A Conversation with Professor Neal Zaslaw

Magda Romanska, BLO Dramaturg and Associate Professor of Dramaturgy at Emerson College, talks to Professor Neal Zaslaw about Mozart’s The Magic Flute. Prof. Zaslaw is a world-renowned musicologist and the leading expert on Mozart. Between 1978 and 1982 he supervised recordings of all of Mozart’s symphonies by Jaap Schroeder, Christopher Hogwood, and the Academy of […]

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27 September 2013

Opera Blog: BLO’s Interpretation of “The Magic Flute”

The Magic Flute is considered one of Mozart’s most enduring masterpieces. The story of how it developed and what it meant at the time it was written has captured people’s imaginations almost as much as the work itself. The story behind The Magic Flute is one of mystery, suspense, and twists and turns that paint […]

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