Sunday, July 22, 2012

Cosi Fan Tutte – Salzburg M22 (Part 3: Marry Me A Little)

The ending of Cosi is ambiguous and ripe for interpretation—especially once the men have seduced both sisters. Alfonso says the best revenge is to marry the sisters. But he doesn't say which one each should marry. 

In the original, it’s assumed they should marry their original partners; but many have argued convincingly that the new pairs are better matched.

So, as they reconcile, we are not sure who is singing to whom. As the quartet ends, they scatter; then are drawn back as they sing the closing chorus. It’s clear they are singing about those other optimistic folks, ‘cause they sure don’t look too happy! And what’s with that box at the end?
The Salzburg M22 Cosi Fan Tutte is well sung and well acted; though it sometimes strains to make the directors’ alteration of the plot work. The six singers do some great ensemble work, and this Cosi is one of the less weird M22 productions. I recommend it as a good alternative to more “traditional” interpretations. It’s a fresh look at an ambiguous and often troublesome plot that is paired with (and often contradicted by) sublime music. 
The Finale

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