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Don Giovanni © Monika Rittershaus

Mozart Don Giovanni

From 10 May TO 06 June 2020
Staatsoper Unter den Linden - Berlin
Program

Mozart : Don Giovanni

3 h 15 Sung in : Italian
Cast
  • Conductor
    Pablo Heras-Casado
  • Director
    Claus Guth
  • Performers
    Don Giovanni: Gyula Orendt
    Donna Anna: Evelin Novak
    Donna Elvira: Tara Erraught
    Leporello: David Ostrek
    Don Ottavio: Joel Prieto
    Zerlina: Serena Saenz
    Masetto: Adam Kutny
    Il Commendatore: Grigory Shkarupa
Details on the Performance

At a rendezvous with the wealthy Donna Anna, the womanising Don Giovanni is apprehended by her outraged father, the Commendatore, who Giovanni kills in the ensuing duel. Anna and her fiancé Don Ottavio swear vengeance on the murderer. Donna Elvira, a woman who has been abandoned by Giovanni but keeps falling for his charms, is also outraged, especially when Giovanni’s servant Leporello tells her about his master’s countless conquests. When Giovanni plans to seduce the young bride Zerlina on her wedding day with Leporello’s assistance, Elvira intervenes. Eventually, she teams up with Donna Anna and Don Ottavio to put a stop to the unscrupulous womaniser. But even when Giovanni is staring death in the face, he refuses to show remorse …

The legend of the charming and unscrupulous seducer Don Juan (or Don Giovanni) enjoyed great popularity in the 18th century: sometimes as a cautionary tale of a wrongdoer who eventually gets his comeuppance, sometimes as an allegory of a freedom-loving, unconventional libertine who questions the moral and religious ideas of his day. The »dramma giocoso« created by Mozart and his librettist Da Ponte perfectly blends serious and comic opera. They elevated the subject matter, which was normally given a buffoonish or moralising treatment, with psychological acuity, musical finesse and poetic wit, and depicted both the betrayed Donna Elvira and the seduced Donna Anna as serious antagonists and multilayered characters who are the equals of the irresistible Giovanni.

  • Venue Info
  • Seating Plan
  • Synopsis

Staatsoper Unter den Linden - Berlin Location Unter den Linden 7 - 10117 Berlin Allemagne

The Venue's History in few words …

When the opera house situated on the Lindenallee was inaugurated in 1742, Frederick the Great intended to turn it into the cultural symbol of his ideal capital, the hub of the "Forum Fridericianum." This "enchanted palace," as the enlightened despot called it, is one of the rare vestiges of the old city still visible today, and a large part of German musics cultural heritage is contained within its walls. The Berlin Staatskapelle, for example, the orchestra connected with the opera, was founded in 1570 and the list of its permanent conductors includes names such as those of Meyerbeer, Mendelssohn, Richard Strauss, Furtwangler, Klemperer and Karajan! During the 19th century, the Berlin Opera remained a royal opera, where Weber's FREISCHUTZ was premiered. The activities of the Berlin Staatskapelle developed under Spontini's responsability, the first "Preussischer Generalmusikdirektor," ever appointed. This goes to show the importance of the ensemble in German musical life at that time, an importance which constantly grew, especially after the "Sinfonie-Soireen" were created in 1842, open to the public by subscription.

In 1919, the Royal Opera became a state opera, and played an active role in the exhuberant artistic activity that rocked Germany during the twenties: Erich Kleiber presented Berg's WOZZECK and popular harmonies of composers such as Kurt Weill resounded in this shrine of the lyrical repertoire, until Nazism cut short a period of intense creativity. During the war, Karajan forged his reputation in the theatre, until bombs destroyed the building, partially in 1941, and completely in 1945.

Because of its geographical situation, the Staatsoper became, in 1949, the Opera of East Berlin. In 1955, the East German administration reinstalled the company in its illustrious hall, rebuilt along the original plans, and one could soon applaud singers such as Peter Schreier and Theo Adam on its stage, musicians who helped create a truly Eastern German singing tradition.

Since the German reunification, the institution has been completely reorganized, especially under the impetus of Daniel Barenboim, who became its General Music Director in 1992. Proud of its impressive history, the present day Opera Unter den Linden hardly neglects its baroque beginnings, and it henceforth counts amongst those that most often produce pre-Mozartian lyrical works, such as CLEOPATRA E CESARE by Graun which opened the Opera's first season in 1742. But the house also commissions works by Pierre Boulez, while defending the traditional repertoire, in which Wagner occupies a large place. By thus juxtaposing tradition and innovation, the Opera Unter den Linden has become one of the institutions most representative of Berlin's new dynamism.

Staatsoper Unter den Linden

The seating plan is given as an indication and has no contractual value.
The division of categories may differ depending on shows and dates.

Synopsis

Don Giovanni

One of the most popular and frequently performed operas in the history of the medium, Don Giovanni is arguably Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart's most cherished and enduring work.

First performed in 1787, the opera includes a libretto by celebrated poet Lorenzo Da Ponte and continues to thrill and entertain audiences to this day. Broadly classified as a comedy the work blends melodrama and also includes a supernatural element. Making it one of the richest and most engaging classical works ever produced.

HISTORY
The piece centres around the life and exploits of fictional libertine and seducer Don Juan. Exploring the intricacies of his numerous relationships and eventual demise.

Act 1
The Don unsuccessfully attempts to seduce the already betrothed Donna Anna. The girl escapes and her father, the Commendatore challenges the Don to a dual. Giovanni kills the older man and escape with his servant Leporello, Donna Anna returns with her husband Don Ottavio and discovers her murdered father. She makes Ottavio swear he will avenge the death.
Leporello declares Giovanni's life to be scandalous, which angers his master. The Don's former lover Donna Elvira appears, angry at her betrayal at the hands of a man. Inspired by the prospect of another conquest Don Giovanni approaches only to be rebuffed.
Giovanni attempts to seduce another woman Zerlina, but is thwarted by Donna Elvira who exposes his true character to the girl. Donna Anna and Don Ottavio arrive at Giovanni's castle and, unaware of his role in the Commendatore's death, request his help in finding the killer.
After discovering Giovanni's role in her fathers murder, Donna Anna, Don Ottavio, Zerlina her scorned husband Masetto and Elvira resolve to kill the don. Wearing masks the group attempt an attack on the Don who keeps them at bay with his sword whilst using Leporello as a shield before escaping.

Act 2
Leporello threatens to leave Giovanni but is convinced to stay by the offer of money. Giovanni's enemy's track down the pair and prepare to kill the don, but he evades them once again, pretending to be his servant.
Returning to his castle Giovanni is begged by Elvira to change his ways but he decides to ignore her pleas. The remembrance statue erected in memory of the Commendatore comes to life and enters Giovanni's dining room as he eats. He asks the Don to repent but is ignored. The statue takes the Don's hand and drags him to hell, punishing him for a life of lies, inequity and deceit. Donna Anna, Don Ottavio, Elvira, Zerlina and Masetto arrive at the Don's castle to enact there revenge. They are too late and resolve to live honest and worthy lives before going their separate ways.

MAIN ROLES

Don Giovanni - Baritone
Leporello - Bass
Commendatore - Bass
Donna Anna - Soprano
Don Ottavio - Tenor
Donna Elvira - Soprano
Masetto - Bass
Zerlina - Soprano

Staatsoper Unter den Linden

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