Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
THE MARRIAGE OF FIGARO
Le Nozze di Figaro
Opera buffa in four acts, in Italian.
Recitatives in Polish, translated by Stanisław Barańczak
There is a real treat for music aficionados, since this is how one should perceive every premiere of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s famous The Marriage of Figaro. And when such premiere takes place almost three and a half decades after the premiere of this work on the Warsaw Chamber Opera’s stage, and is held in the same place, it is safe to speak about the great feast of the classical opera. Le Nozze di Figaro or The Marriage of Figaro, and for the experts K. 492. This, magical, three-digit number systematize the legacy of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart in the catalogue of Ludwig Alois Ferdinand Ritter von Köchel. But beneath those three figures lies the absolute of art, an iconic work on the review of all art, which is under the patronage of the Polyhymnia. A catalogue of human dramas, love elations, slips, description of human weaknesses, but also a praise of the spur of heart like a spring water. All of these was described by Lorenzo da Ponte, giving to Mozart a libretto referring directly to the play by Pierre Beaumarchais from 1781.
This piece is admitted to the most remarkable works of classical music, not to mention about the canon of operas. Looking at all classical music, not many compositions appeared so spectacularly in the legacy of our civilization and in the group of operas, this is an absolute artistic Olympus. It’s even harder to believe that the Salzburg Master created this masterpiece within six weeks!
For the Warsaw Chamber Opera The Marriage of Figaro is a showcase of chamber musicians sung by the countless number of opera stars and singers often debuting in WOK (WCO). Infinite performances throughout Europe, including the most renowned festivals, and finally the phenomenon of popularity in the Land of the Cherry Blossom, where the Warsaw chamber musicians staged this spectacle about a hundred times and is already written in golden letters in the annals of the Polish opera.
When you read in one of the favourite fragments of the work, in the words that moved Mozart: “I’m talking about love in reality, I talk about love in dreams, about water, shadows, mountains, flowers, grass, fountains.”, then we know that the quivering of human emotions written in notes, written out for voices and instruments awaits us.
Room in the castle of Count Almaviva. Figaro, Count Almaviva’s servant, is in love with Susanna, the Countess’s maid. Count also seems to be infatuated with the girl. Marcellina appears. Back in the day, Figaro borrowed money from her, promising to marry her if he didn’t give his money back. Doctor Bartolo wants to free himself from Marcellina. In addition, a young page Cherubino, who sighs to Barbarina – the daughter of the gardener Antonio – also sighs to the Countess. Count decides to send him away from the castle, but after Susanna’s intervention, he orders him to join the army.
Figaro is planning a plot: Susanna will arrange an encounter with Almaviva, but Cherubino will appear instead. Fearing of being ridiculed, Count would agree to Susanna’s and Figaro’s wedding. When Cherubino dresses up in a woman’s clothes, Count wants to enter his wife’s alcove. Cherubino makes noise, when trying to hide, which arouses the Count’s jealousy. Instead of Cherubino, Susanna hides and is discovered by Almaviva. He is ready to apologize to his wife for an unjust suspicion when Antonio appears – someone trampled his flowers, when stepping out of the window. Figaro takes the blame on himself, but Count remains suspicious. Marcellina demands either a repayment of debt or a marriage. Figaro refuses. Count appoints a court hearing.
Susanna arranges the meeting with Almaviva. However, Figaro’s careless word, makes Count suspecting a deceit. He decides to take revenge on his servant during the trial. Then it turns out that Figaro is the missing child of Marcellina and Bartolo. Countess – trying to regain her husband’s love – changes into Susanna’s clothes and goes out for an arranged encounter. Antonio meets Cherubino, who has never become a soldier. Count, though he wants to punish a young page, must give him permission to marry Barbarina. A while ago, while seducing Barbarina, he promised the girl to make her every dream come true.
Figaro notices Susanna, while delivering a note to Count. He is obviously jealous. He decides to come to the place of the meeting to take revenge on Susanna. During the night scene in the garden, a series of funny misunderstandings takes place – Count takes his wife for Susanna, Figaro confuses Susanna with the Countess, whom he confesses his love. When the situation finally clarifies, Count begs his wife for forgiveness and gives permission for Susanna’s and Figaro’s marriage.