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Mozart: Don Giovanni Excerpts

Can you guess this piece? Here's a hint: The dinner date from hell...

In 1786, following a successful production of “The Marriage of Figaro” in Prague, Mozart received a commission for an operatic premiere in this Bohemian city. Mozart’s response was to produce what has probably become the most famous of many tales of the infamous lover Don Juan. In this complex work, bawdy humor is tempered by the threat of a decidedly toasty punishment. In this final scene, the murdered Commendatore, spurred on by Giovanni’s crude graveside jest that he should join them for dinner, makes his unwelcome appearance. Arriving to two dramatic chords that were first heard in the Overture, the Commendatore drags the unrepentant lothario down to hell. While some productions choose to end at this dramatic high-point, others maintain Mozart’s final sextet in which the characters sum up the moral of the story.

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