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La finta giardiniera at the Royal Opera

This will be my third "early" opera in a month. Having seen Janáček's Osud and Puccini's Le villi a couple of weeks ago, I went to the first performance of Mozart's La finta giardiniera at the Royal Opera last night. It was definitely the best of the three.

The set (see above) was suitably simple and clean - with a real fountain and a stream of water towards the pit area. Robert Murray's Count Belfiore and Patrizia Biccirè's Serpetta were both strong in voice as well as acting. Sir John Eliot Gardiner and the English Baroque Soloists were on good form - projecting a forward and eager sound. The music itself is interesting - in that you are listening to ideas and themes that will manifest into the mature operas such as Idomeneo, Figaro and Don Diovanni. Though don't expect to be wowed by the music - this is still early Mozart (K 196) along the lines of the very early piano concerti and sonatas.


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