Le Nozze di Figaro

Le Nozze di Figaro

The Marriage of Figaro

Opera




Context


Mozart chose the Beaumarchais play and personally brought it to Lorenzo Da Ponte.  The play by Beaumarchais was originally banned in Vienna because of its sexual undertones and lack of morality.  Luckily, Da Ponte created the libretto in only six weeks, but made a point to remove or soften the political agenda (most of which concerned the lower classes fighting against nobility). This is was the first of a few famous collaborations between Mozart and Da Ponte, and it was hugely successful.  Mozart, himself, directed and conducted the first performances of Nozze in Vienna in 1786.  After the show was produced in a few other locations, and its huge success in Prague, Mozart and Da Ponte were commissioned for Don Giovanni. Nozze is still one of Mozart’s most performed operas and was incredibly progressive in that Mozart portrays the lower classes in a charming light, which was not the case for the time.  Mozart went on to portray and highlight the lives of the lower classes in later operas as well.

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