That’s the Naples opera house up there
May 20, 2011


Le Nozze di Figaro

Beaumarchais wrote three plays about Figaro, Rossini’s Barber of Seville is an adaptation of the first, in which the Count abolishes the droit du seigneur, or what fans of Braveheart will remember as jus primae nocti. (There is NO reliable evidence that such rights ever existed.) Mozart and Lorenzo da Ponte adapted the second, in which the count lusts after Figaro’s fiance, and attempts to reimpose the right.

While Beaumarchais’ plays are political comedies, Mozart’s opera, except for the reference to the lord’s right, is not terribly political.

Renee Fleming is outstanding, and the girl playing Susannah is fetching and has the virginal sexiness that you would expect in a soon to be bride of the 18th century.

I note that one reviewer over at Amazon says that his kids, ages 2 and 5, love this version of the opera. Lucky guy to have kids that young who like opera.