conductor and director: Iván Fischer
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart: Don Giovanni
Christopher Maltman (Don Giovanni)
José Fardilha (Leporello)
Laura Aikin (Donna Anna)
Lucy Crowe (Donna Elvira)
Jeremy Ovenden (Don Ottavio)
Kristinn Sigmundsson (Commendatore)
Sylvia Schwartz (Zerlina)
Matteo Peirone (Masetto)
As long ago as 2011, The New York Times was describing Iván Fischer’s production of Don Giovanni as “more involving, imaginative and theatrically daring” than many full performances. This year, a whole new cast will be introducing you to the world’s most notorious womaniser, in one of the greatest compositions ever conceived.
Don Giovanni, Hamlet, and the sea – Flaubert believed that God had created nothing more perfect than these three ones. The two-act opera by Mozart, which tells the story of Don Juan, premièred in 1787 and ever since has been bewitching audiences with its timeless tale of tragedy and comedy, musical psychoanalysis, eroticism, games and drama, and fully fleshed-out characters.
Mozart was working to achieve this level of perfection right up until the very last moment; anecdotally, he had been locked in his room for the night to make sure he would finish it. It is not beyond the realms of possibility that Casanova himself provided assistance to author Lorenzo Da Ponte during the final retouching of the libretto. Da Ponte lived a scandalous life too; he was an infamous adventurer with countless lovers who therefore had no trouble identifying with the character of Don Giovanni.
There have been numerous stagings of the opera, but the 2011 interpretation by Iván Fischer and the Festival Orchestra managed to fire up and dazzle not only Hungarian audiences, but also those at the Mostly Mozart Festival in New York. Seen and Heard International went as far as to write that “this production will stand as a hallmark against which all others will be judged.” To kick off the season, the BFO’s music director is presenting Mozart’s grand opera, with a new cast featuring one of the world’s most popular Don Giovannis, Christopher Maltman, and in the now familiar staged concert format.
The production was originally co-produced by Budapest Festival Orchestra and Müpa Budapest.