Libretto by Giovanni Bertati; first performed in Venice 5th February 1787.
English translation by Jeremy Gray and Gilly French
The Orangery terrace, Westonbirt School 28 August 2004
St John's Smith Square, 16 September 2004
|Don Giovanni||Daniel Norman|
|Donna Anna||Helen Semple|
|Duca Ottavio||Huw Rhys-Evans|
|Donna Elvira||Sarah Redgwick|
|Donna Ximena||Cheryl Enever|
|Orchestra||The London Mozart Players|
|Don Giovanni||Ashley Catling|
|Donna Anna||Amanda Pitt|
|Duca Ottavio||Benjamin Regan|
|Donna Elvira||Sarah-Jane Dale|
|Donna Ximena||Gillian French|
Chorus of peasants Morag Crowther, Jennifer French, Wendy Guest, Annabel Molyneaux, David Hackett, Andrew Hichens, Ben Linton, Damian Riddle. Dancers Felicity Cormack, Joan Monks
Orchestra Simon Fischer (leader), Paul Buxton, Alison Strange, Adrian Dunn, Lawrence Whitfield, Gill Brightwell violin; Luciano Iorio, Cathy McCracken viola; Christina Shillito (continuo), Eve Harris cello; Ken Knussen double bass; Jonathan Katz harpsichord; Caroline Marwood, Neil Black oboe; Derek Taylor, Richard Wainwright horn.
Don Giovanni attempts to seduce Donna Anna whilst his manservant Pasquariello keeps lonely watch outside. Giovanni is challenged to a duel by Anna's father, the Commendatore; the Commendatore is killed and Anna's fiancé, Duca Ottavio, swears vengeance. In his search for new adventures Giovanni encounters his forsaken love Donna Elvira. Pasquariello delights in telling Elvira every detail of his master's many conquests whilst the Don is busy wooing Donna Ximena. A party of peasants enters: Maturina and Biagio are about to celebrate their wedding. Giovanni relishes the opportunity of yet another conquest, and sees off an angry Biagio. He skilfully manoeuvres his way out of a simultaneous collision with all three women, leaving Maturina and Elvira to fight it out between themselves.
Ottavio visits the Commendatore's mausoleum, followed by the Don and his servant. To Pasquariello's terror, the statue visibly and audibly accepts an invitation to supper: Giovanni however is unconvinced. Back at Giovanni's house, Elvira arrives and makes an impassioned but unsuccessful final plea for the Don to mend his ways. As the evening progresses Giovanni and Pasquariello share the pleasures of good food and wine, singing the praises of life's delights, the beauties of Venice, and Venetian women in particular. The statue arrives to keep its appointment and drags an unrepentant Giovanni to his death. Ottavio and the women enter, aroused by the noise; Pasquariello and the cook Lanterna describe Giovanni's downfall and the opera ends with final rejoicing.
Financial Times 20 September 2004
Opera magazine November 2004
Opera Japonica website, October 2004
Musical Opinion November 2004
Don Juan transformed