12 May 2015

Opera Blog: The Ethics of “Don Giovanni”




Originally posted at Boston Lyric Opera Blog (5/12/2015) Don Giovanni premiered in 1787, eleven years after the start of the American Revolution and two years before the French Revolution. This was the twilight of the Enlightenment, an era that officially ended in the 1780s. Although many versions of Don Giovanni’s story were performed across Europe […]

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7 May 2015

Opera Blog: “Don Giovanni” – The Law of the Father




Originally posted at Boston Lyric Opera blog (5/7/15)   One of the most compelling characters of Mozart’s Don Giovanni is the figure of the Commendatore, Donna Anna’s murdered father, who returns from the dead to avenge himself and his daughter. In the 18th century, Mozart’s portrayal of the Commendatore carried two important semiotic frameworks. First, as […]

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4 May 2015

Opera Blog: BLO’s Version of Mozart’s “Don Giovanni”




Originally posted at Boston Lyric Opera Blog (5/4/2015) During preparations for the Prague premiere of Don Giovanni in October of 1787, Mozart was, as ever, heavily involved with all aspects of the production, from the music and the staging to writing the libretto. In fact, he continued writing and rewriting until the opening and even […]

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29 April 2015

Opera Blog: “Don Giovanni” in Prague and Vienna




Originally posted at Boston Lyric Opera blog (4/29/2015) Although we don’t know the exact date of Mozart’s arrival in Prague for the production of Don Giovanni, we do know that he was actively involved in shaping the libretto and the staging. His first letter from Prague, dated August 24, 1787, suggests that he had already […]

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27 April 2015

Opera Blog: The Legend of Don Giovanni (or, Don Giovanni before “Don Giovanni”)




Originally posted at Boston Lyric Opera blog (4/27/2015) Abert, Hermann. Mozart’s “Don Giovanni.” London: Eulenburg Books, 1976.The origins of the Don Giovanni legend reach back to the Middle Ages, but the character didn’t become fully fleshed out until the Renaissance, when it first appeared in the 1630 comedy, El Burlador de Sevilla y convidado de […]

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24 April 2015

Opera Blog: The Women of Don Giovanni




Originally posted at Boston Lyric Opera Blog (4/24/2015) By the 18th century, educated women were beginning to question male freedoms and dominance of society, and starting to demand similar freedoms for themselves. Many men were also increasingly uneasy about their own social and economic privileges, especially the moral latitude shown toward male sexuality (as opposed […]

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