La Clemenza di Tito (1791): Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

Mozart: La Clemenza di Tito (Met 2012)

★★★★

(Metropolitan Opera, New York, 2012)

Since launching the new website, I’ve been busily spring cleaning my blog and, you know what? It’s amazing what you find at the bottom of the drafts folder. As a result, there will be several extremely belated posts cropping up over the next few weeks, starting with some Mozart, in the form of La Clemenza di Tito. As you may remember, I first encountered this opera via the modern, rather conceptual Salzburg version and was keen to compare that with a more traditional production. Enter the Met, stage left, with their legendary, ultra-conservative version. It may not be the most cutting-edge production in the book, but it gave me a visual feast of fine gowns, billowing cloaks and fabulous wigs.

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La Clemenza di Tito (1791): Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

Mozart: Clemenza di Tito

★★★★

(Salzburg Festival 2003; Wiener Philharmoniker conducted by Nikolaus Harnoncourt)

For my first opera DVD of the new year, I decided it was time to make the acquaintance of Mozart’s Clemenza. This is one of the most popular and frequently filmed operas out there and it can be hard to know where to start; but fortunately there was help on hand in the form of Dehggial, who writes the knowledgeable and deliciously irreverent blog Opera, innit. Dehggial has a particular fondness for Clemenza and recommended this production from the 2003 Salzburg Festival. It’s a rather austere, dark take on the opera with some splendid singing and powerful acting. It was only after buying it that I realised it had been designed by none other than Martin Kušej, which meant there were some interesting links with motifs from the Royal Opera House’s recent Idomeneo.

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