WOLFGANG AMADEUS MOZART (1756-1791): Les Mystères d’Isis (adapted by Ludwig Wenzel Lachnith [1746-1820]).
Catalogue Number: 12R015
Reference: GCD 921630
Description: The French being French, a German singspiel like Die Zauberflöte couldn’t possibly be staged in Paris unless it were chopped, diced, rearranged, cut here and augmented there for exactly what the public would expect to see at the Théâtre de la République et des Arts when they went there on Aug. 20, 1801. A new French libretto had to be commissioned, which sticks reasonably close to the original but changes several characters’ names and greatly increases the size of the Papagena role while allowing for sets and costumes to cash in on the new French mania for all things Egyptian. In pasticcio fashion, original Zauberflöte sections of music are mixed with selections taken from La Clemenza di Tito, Le nozze di Figaro and Don Giovanni (e.g., the Queen of the Night [here named Myrrène], makes her debut with Donna Anna’s first aria from Don Giovanni while her show-stopping coloratura extravaganza which for many is a highlight of Mozart’s original is cut altogether, the role having been converted to mezzo-soprano). A major success, Les Mystères had racked up 128 Parisian performances by 1828. 2 CDs. French-English libretto. Chantal Santon-Jeffery (soprano), Marie Lenormand, Renata Pokupic (mezzos), Sébastien Droy (tenor), Tassis Christoyannis (baritone), Jean Teitgen (bass), Flemish Radio Choir, Le Concert Spirituel; Diego Fasolis.