Ep. 11 Cosi fan Tutte by Mozart Broadcast 10.8.17
On this episode of Opera for Everyone, we listen to Così Fan Tutte - an opera in two acts with music by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, and an Italian libretto by Lorenzo da Ponte. It is an "opera buffa" - comedic opera - and is one of the three Mozart operas for which da Ponte wrote the libretto. The other two da Ponte-Mozart collaborations were "Le nozze di Figaro" and "Don Giovanni." It debuted in 1790 in Vienna's Burgtheater.
The opera's full name is "Così fan Tutte - ossia La Scuola degli Amanti" which translates to "Thus Do They All - or The School For Lovers." It refers to the storyline where two young men - Guglielmo and Ferrando - agree to a bet with their older and wiser friend Don Alfonso who wagers that women can cheat just the way men do.
Don Alfonso plots to have the men tell their fiancees - Dorabella and Firodiligi - that they have been called away on military duty immediately, and begins a scheme to seduce the young women thereby proving his assertion that women will stray, allowing him to win the bet.
The surly hotel maid, Despina, plays a key role in Don Alfonso's plot helping him to introduce the ladies to two young male foreigners besotted with the young sisters. The "foreigners" are actually the soldiers in disguise. The plot moves along with the men trying to seduce their own girlfriends, and luckily ends happily with the couples reunited with their true loves.