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When to see it

The Story

Prince Tamino promises the Queen of the Night that he will rescue her daughter Pamina from the enchanter Sarastro. He begins his quest, accompanied by the bird-catcher Papageno, but all is not as it seems.

Read more… (Contains spoilers)

Background

Mozart wrote Die Zauberflöte (The Magic Flute) for a suburban theatre in Vienna, the Theater auf der Wieden, and drew on the magical spectacle and earthy comedy of popular Viennese theatre. As well as being a comedy, Die Zauberflöte is an expression of Mozart’s profound spiritual beliefs. Enlightenment concerns with the search for wisdom and virtue are at the heart of this enchanting tale. Die Zauberflöte was an instant success with audiences and Mozart’s supposed rival Salieri described it as an ‘operone’ – a great opera.

David McVicar’s classic production embraces both the seriousness and comedy of Mozart’s work. The audience is transported to a fantastical world of dancing animals, flying machines and dazzlingly starry skies. The setting provides a wonderful backdrop for Mozart’s kaleidoscopic score, from the Queen of the Night’s coloratura fireworks to Tamino and Pamina’s lyrical love duets and Papageno’s hearty, folksong-like arias.

On Wikipedia

The Magic Flute (German: Die Zauberflöte, K. 620) is an opera in two acts by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart to a German libretto by Emanuel Schikaneder. The work is in the form of a Singspiel, a popular form that included both singing and spoken dialogue. The work premiered in 1791 at Schikaneder's theatre, the Freihaus-Theater auf der Wieden in Vienna.

Abstract taken from the Wikipedia article The Magic Flute, available under a Creative Commons license.