Was pondering Batti Batti last night. From a singing point of view, its wonderful. Has such lovely interval jumps and the runs etc..they are pages of vocal exercises in themselves! But what about the text?
I still have a bit of research to do on the plot, and its not an opera I've seen live, but from what I've read so far....Zerlina is somewhat seduced by the Don, but when he leads her away, she cries for help! Not exactly positive.
Then when her Masetto is jealous afterwards, she advises him to "beat her"...I know its got comic elements but still not sure how I should react to it. Starting to wonder if it says something about the time period it was written in as well as how talented Da Ponte was as a librettist?
Maybe reading too much into it (and I know, can't judge past centuries by modern western standards) but how should a modern woman play it?
Can't help feeling it has a touch of black comedy or dare I say S&M about it..hahah!
Is Zerlina manipulating Masetto and playing her cards as she chooses or is he behaving like an insensitive, overgrown child?
Is she really worried he will leave her?
Did she go with the Don of her own free will?
So many questions, so little time
I've just watched the first 1/2 hour or so on youtube.
This is in no way a comedy. Yes, there are comic elements and a general playfulness to the music and acting but its way more serious then that. Its about real life issues, but magnified...
Elvira is my favorite character so far..she enters with such power and force.
As for the Don, well, he has serious mammy issues to put it mildly!
His servant is quite pleasant, but then again, if he was a nice guy, he'd hardly be hanging around with the Don now would he? Perhaps there are no other jobs available.
No thoughts at the moment on the father/daughter at the very beginning. Maybe she will be more prominent later.
I think with the Da Ponte operas, the best way to think of them is comedy in the sense that commedia del'arte is comedy (that is what they are based on) - lots of info on google if you aren't familiar with commedia del'arte. The characters are archetypes rather than "realismo" and the comedy is more like a punch and judy show than what we think of as comedy. Personally, I think that modern performances of Da Ponte operas often try to turn them into 19th/20th century realistic and romantic drama, whereas they were conceived more like a restoration farce with formulaic characters and formulaic plots which the audience of the time understood as 'the way it goes' much like we would with punch and judy or pantomime now. What I am probably taking a long time to say is, don't take it too seriously! The characters aren't meant to be 3-dimensional.
Your right!! I know your right...I just want them to be real I've obviously been watching too many movies