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Sunday Afternoon at the Opera - Mozart: Cosi fan tutte

07/16/2017 1:00 pm
07/16/2017 4:30 pm


Sunday Afternoon at the Opera host Keith Brown writes:

In the genre of the eighteenth century Italian opera buffa, Mozart's Cosi fan tutte ("Thus Do They All," 1790), is doubtless the most perfect example. By "perfect" this must mean the classic symmetry of the composition and its unfailing melodiousness. Certainly, it possesses the perfect buffo libretto provided by Mozart's frequent collaborator, Lorenzo da Ponte.

Cosi fan tutte has been frequently recorded. A renowned interpreter of eighteen century music, the late Sir Charles Mackerras, conducted Cosi for its staging at the 1993 Edinburgh Music Festival in Scotland. An international cast of operatic notables of the day was assembled for this production: the English soprano Felicity Lott as Fiordiligi, the American tenor Jerry Hadley as Ferrando, the Italian tenor Alessandro Corbelli as Guglielmo and the French bass Gilles Cachemaille portraying Don Alfonso. (Mackerras himself was Australian by birth.) The Edinburgh Festival Chorus and Scottish Chamber Orchestra took part in the Usher Hall recording sessions. Telarc released the 1993 Edinburgh Festival Cosi on three compact discs in 1994. A reissue of Mackerras's wonderful interpretation came along in 2008. I make use of that three-CD reissue in broadcast today.