Saturday, September 30, 2017

September 30, 1791: Mozart's The Magic Flute premiered

Last updated August 27, 2018.

Die Zauberflöte (The Magic Flute), opera, K. 620

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (composer)

Composed: 1791

First Performed: September 30, 1791

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Quotable: “Among the greatest human documents” and “one of the greatest operas of the entire repertoire” – All Music Guide

Genre: classical > opera


  1. Overture. Adagio - Allegro
  2. Zu Hilfe! zu Hilfe! sonst bin ich verloren! (Introduction)
  3. Der Vogelfänger bin ich ja
  4. Dies Bildnis ist bezaubernd schön
  5. O zittre nicht, mein lieber Sohn... Zum Leiden bin ich auserkoren
  6. Hm! hm! hm! hm! hm! hm! hm! hm! hm! hm! hm! hm! hm!
  7. Du feines Täubchen, nur herein!
  8. Bei Mannern, welche Liebe fühlen
  9. Zum Ziele führt dich diese Bahm (Finale)
  10. March. Adagio
  11. O Isis und Osiris
  12. Bewahret euch vor Weibertücke: dies ist des Bundes erste Pflicht
  13. Wie? wie? wie? Ihr an diesem Schrekkenort?
  14. Alles fühlt der Liebe Freuden
  15. Der Hölle Rache kocht in meinem Herzen
  16. In diesen heil'gen Hallen
  17. Seid uns zum zweiten Mal willkommen
  18. Ach, ich fühl's, es ist verschwunden, ewig hin der Liebe Glück
  19. O Isis und Osiris, welche Wonne!
  20. Soll ich dich, Teurer, nicht mehr sehn? Ihr werdet froh euch wiedersehn!
  21. Ein Mädchen oder Weibchen wünscht Papageno sich
  22. Bald prangt, den Morgen zu verkünden (Finale)

Average Duration: 2:09:23


The Magic Flute is a two-act opera with both singing and spoken dialogue, or libretto, by Emanuel Schikaneder. Jakob August Libeskind’s story “Lulu or the Magic Flute” is considered a possible source for Schikaneder’s libretto. RS “Although overwhelmed by many adversities, Mozart found great joy in working” RS on the opera. It premiered at Schikaneder’s Theater auf der Wieden in the suburbs of Vienna on September 30, 1791. WK

The “story about good and evil” RS tells about a high priest named Sarastro who abducts Pamina, the daughter of the evil Queen of the Night. The queen sends Prince Tamino to rescue Pamina. Tamino not only falls in love with Pamina, but decides to join Sarastro, who he accepts “as the incarnation of truth and goodness.” RS “Tamino and Pamina undergo severe trials of initiation, which end in triumph, with the Queen and her cohorts vanquished.” WK “Tamino's counterpart is Papageno…whose earthiness counterbalances Tamino's idealism,” RS “fails the trials completely but is rewarded anyway with the hand of…Papagena,” WK “a female version of himself.” RS

has been called a Masonic opera: both librettist and composer were Masons, and the opera abounds with Masonic symbolism, culminating in the triumph over light over darkness. Although the Masonic flavor of The Magic Flute is undeniable, what makes it a great work of art is Mozart's unique ability to translate his humanistic ideals into music of extraordinary beauty and evocativeness. The fundamental theme of this opera is love, a theme to which Mozart fully dedicates his entire genius. To the listener, Mozart's ode to love brings eighteenth century opera in its full splendor. Not only is the music…enchanting and invigorating, but it also effectively coalesces with the story to create a powerful, convincing work of art.” RS

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