PULLMAN, Wash. – Scenes from four operas featuring wizards, witches, potions and poisons will be presented free to the public at 8 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 13, in Bryan Hall by the Washington State University Opera Workshop.
“A Magical Evening of Opera” – directed by Julie Anne Wieck and accompanied by Karen Savage – will include parts from the baroque opera, “Dido and Aeneas,” by Henry Purcell; “Bastien und Bastienne” and “Cosi fan tutte” by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart; and Gaetano Donizetti’s romantic opera, “The Elixir of Love.”
“Dido and Aeneas” is based on a story from Virgil’s “Aeneid.” But a sorceress and her witches are added as the mechanism by which the lovers are separated, bringing about the destruction of Carthage.
The pastoral “Bastien und Bastienne,” written by Mozart at age 11, has a magician advising a young shepherd and shepherdess on how to win each other’s love. In “Cosi fan tutte,” two men make a bet to woo and win each other’s girlfriends; in disguise they fake suicide by poison in order to sway the ladies’ affections.
“The Elixir of Love,” refers to a potion purchased by a young man to be used to win the woman he loves.