Friday, 19 July 2019

meine tochter nimmer mehr

Featured in Amadeus, a favourite of the endearingly incompetent Florence Foster Jenkins and dispatched to the Cosmos on the Golden Records of the Voyager emissaries, we’re all familiar with the challenging coloratura passage, the trilled run spanning two octaves, of Mozart’s Die Zauberflöte but I failed to appreciate the piece’s message and that it’s classified as a rage aria (which sounds quite fancy—Yas Queen, the Italian terms being aria agitate or aria infuriate).
Entitled “Hell’s Vengeance Boils in my Heart” (Der Hölle Rache kocht in meinem Herzen), the Queen of the Night delivers a knife to her daughter Pamina and on pain of disownment, assassinate her arch-rival, the high priest Sarastro, whom had recruited her daughter and would be rescuer Prince Tamino and sidekick Papageno to his school of thought. Familiar with her vocal talents, Mozart wrote the part for his sister-in-law Josepha Hofer who first played the role, with words by librettist Emanuel Schikaneder—whom himself played the part of bird-catcher Papageno in the opera’s premiere.