Le Nozze Di Figaro Analysis

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Le nozze di Figaro is an opera buffa (comic opera) that was composed by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart in 1786 during his time in Vienna, with an Italian libretto written by Lorenzo da Ponte. It was originally a play, written by Pierre-Augustin Beaumarchais, called La folle journée, ou Le mariage de Figaro. Due to how scandalous the play was, Beaumarchais’s play was not allowed to be performed in Vienna, but after the composition of the opera by Mozart and the writing of the libretto by da Ponte, the emperor allowed it to be performed on stage. Their version contained social tensions Following the original publication (known as the autograph score), Le nozze di Figaro was replicated by copyists. However, there were changes made in some of the…show more content…
The characters can be organized by social class, with Antonio, Barbarina, Susanna, Figaro and Marcellina in the lowest class, Bartolo, Basilio, and (Don) Curzio in the middle class, and The Count, Countess, and Cerubino in the upper class. During this time period, a “family” was defined by the whole household. However, Don Curzio is not seen as a family member, giving him a smaller role than the other characters. Da Ponte demonstrates this concept in his libretto by making Figaro and Susanna having to ask the Count to get married. Throughout the opera, the social tensions are either put up with or the individual “tries to break the bonds of his caste,” similar to a “fight or flight” response. The men tended to deal with the situations in the opera while the women try to disassociate with their caste. The is the case for women because in the late eighteenth century, upper classes were more “feminine” in the way that fashion was one of the central identifying factors. In addition, women are beginning to be seen as more intellectual beings during this century. It was much easier for women to break the barriers to the caste, and blend with those of an upper class. This opera demonstrates this by practically making the class of Susanna and the Countess indistinguishable. This effect is not evident in the male counterparts, as Figaro and Susanna have encounters with the Countess and the Count, respectively, but the perception of their class is distinctly contrasted. Through the presentation of social tensions between characters, the social situation of Vienna in the late eighteenth century was shown through the
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