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Mozart, W. A. (1756-1791)


Die Zauberflote

The Magic Flute





Composed 1791.
First performed September 30, 1791.
Libretto by Emanuel Schikaneder (in German).




A Summary of gThe Magic Fluteh



Act 1
In ancient times, in Egypt, this is an imaginary story. Prince Tamino is attacked by a big serpent. But, three ladies who are the servants of the Queen of the Night save him. Three ladies show him a portrait of the queenfs daughter, Pamina, and Tamino falls in love with her eventhough he has not even met her. The Queen of the Night promises her daughter to him, if he can rescue Pamina who is enslaved by the evil Sarastro. Tamino decides to rescue her, and is given a magic flute by the three lady servants. There is a man, Papageno who is a bird catcher. Incidentlly, he follows Tamino, and is also given magic bells by the ladies.
By the power of the magic flute and bells, Tamino finally gets to meet Pamina. They fall in love with each other immediately. In fact, Sarastro is not an evil man, but an high priest. He has protected Pamina from her mother who is filled with ambition to dominate the world.

Act 2
Sarastro imposes three tests on Tamino to get his lover, Pamina. The first test is gSilence.h When Tamino falls silent, Pamina who knows nothing feels sorrow, but they can endure this test. The scond test is gFire,h and the third test is gWater.h They can overcome these tests through the power of the magic flute.
In addition, Papageno is also tested to get his unseen lover. Papageno is not able to endure the tedts. He canft pass his tests. However, he can meet his lover, Papagengah through the power of the magic bells. Papageno falls in love with Papagena.
On the other hand, Paminafs mother, the Queen of the Night is furious. She tries to break into the temple of Sarastro. But, she is hit by a thunderbolt, and goes to hell.
In the end, Sarastro blesses Tamino and Pamina for overcoming their tests.




A Comment on gThe Magic Fluteh



The opera, gThe Magic Flute,h is the last opera by Mozart. The world premiere of this opera which was actually conducted by Mozart on the 30th of September in 1791. Papagano was played by Emanuel Schikaneder, the principal of the theater, who requested Mozart to compose this opera. Mozart died on the 5th of December that year. He instructed those closest to him to play gThe Magic Fluteh for him when he is on his deathbed. I assume that Mozart really loved this opera. This opera became so successful, it was performed 100 times that year.

This opera is an imaginary story, so there are some confusing episodes. Because, Mozart and Schikaneder include some creeds of the Freemasons in this opera. But, gThe Magic Fluteh is basically a tender and amusing opera. You will probably enjoy this opera.

The fascinating point of this opera is to have a lot of popular melodies and Mozartfs music. For example, two arias sung by The Queen of the Night include the highest notes possible in music. This role is sung by the Soprano who is called gColoratura soprano.h And, the duet by Papagena and Papageno, gPa Pa Pah is the most amusing song. I recommend you listen to this duet.





Gluck, C. W. (1714-1787)
@- Orpheus and Eurydice

Mozart, W. A. (1756-1791)

@- The Marriage of Figaro
@- Don Giovanni
@- Cosi fan tutte
@- The Magic Flute

Beethoven, L. v. (1770-1827)
@- Fidelio

Weber, C. M. v. (1786-1826)
@- The Magic Bullets

Rossini, G. (1792-1868)
@- The Barber of Seville

Donizetti, G. (1797-1848)
@- The Elixir of Love

Verdi, G. (1813-1901)
@- Macbeth
@- Rigoletto
@- Il trovatore
@- La Traviata
@- Un ballo in maschera
@- Don Carlo
@- Aida
@- Otello
@- Falstaff

Wagner, R. (1813-1883)
@- The Flying Dutchman
@- Tannhauser
@- Lohengrin
@- Tristan und Isolde
@- Die Meistersinger von Nuernberg
@- The Rhinegold
@- Die Walkure
@- Siegfried
@- Twilight of the Gods
@- Parsifal

Offenbach, J. (1819-1880)
@- The Tales of Hoffmann

Strauss, J. (1825-1899)
@- Die Fledermaus (The Bat)

Bizet, G. (1838-1875)
@- Carmen

Tchaikovsky, P. J. (1840-1893)
@- Eugene Onegin

Massenet, J. (1842-1912)
@- Werther

Humperdinck, E. (1854-1921)
@- Hansel and Gretel

Puccini, G. (1858-1924)
@- La Boheme
@- Tosca
@- Madama Butterfly
@- Turandot

Leoncavallo, R. (1858-1919)
@- Pagliacci

Mascagni, P. (1863-1945)
@- Cavalleria Rusticana

Debussy, C. (1862-1918)
@- Pelleas et Melisande

Strauss, R. (1864-1949)
@- Salome
@- The Cavalier of the Rose






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