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UBC Opera: Le nozze di Figaro
February 6, 2022 @ 2:00 pm - 4:00 pm
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart | Composer
Lorenzo da Ponte | Librettist
UBC Opera Ensemble
Gordon Gerrard | Conductor
Nancy Hermiston | Director
With Members of the Vancouver Opera Orchestra
Based on Beaumarchais’ stage comedy, Le nozze di Figaro was the first of three collaborations between Da Ponte and Mozart. On May 1, 1786, it had its successful premiere in Vienna, receiving its Prague debut that December. Critics reported “a masterpiece… no piece has ever caused such a sensation.” This sensation led to the commissioning of another famous Mozart/Da Ponte opera, Don Giovanni.
Le nozze di Figaro is regarded as a cornerstone of the standard operatic repertoire, appearing sixth on the list of the most-performed operas worldwide. The story revolves around engaged and soon-to-be-married Figaro and Susanna, servants of the Count and Countess Almaviva. The Count has grown bored with his marriage and looks to re-engage his feudal rights (droit du seigneur) in which he—instead of Figaro—would consummate the marriage on the couple’s wedding night. Through the clever manipulations of Susanna, Figaro, and the Countess, that right is never restored, and the Count’s love for his Countess is finally rekindled. Adding to the confusion, the stress, and the fun are the antics of an amorous teenager, a scheming old maid aided by a doctor/lawyer, a drunken gardener, and a silly young girl. Much happens on a single “folle journée”—a crazy day.