Mozart Opera The Marriage of Figaro (Le nozze di Figaro)

Opera Milestone: May 1

Mozart's Opera Marriage of Figaro Premieres

This day, May 1 (1786), Mozart's opera buffa Le nozze di Figaro (The Marriage of Figaro) is first performed, in Burgtheater, Vienna.

The Marriage of Figaro is one of the most popular operas of Mozart and most frequently performed worldwide. Le nozze di Figaro (English: The Marriage of Figaro), K. 492 is a comic (buffa) opera in four acts composed by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart in 1786. The Italian libretto was written by Lorenzo Da Ponte, based on a stage comedy by Pierre Beaumarchais, La folle journee, ou le Mariage de Figaro (English: "The Mad Day, or The Marriage of Figaro"), which was first performed in 1784. 

Briefly, the plot tells how the servants Figaro and Susanna succeed in getting married by foiling the efforts of their philandering employer Count Almaviva to seduce Susanna, and teaching him a lesson in faithfulness.  


1.  Mozart's opera - Le Nozze Di Figaro (The Marriage Of Figaro). Paris 1993 production, directed by Olivier Mille and conducted by John Eliot Gardiner. Cast:  Figaro - Bryn Terfel, Il Conte d'Almaviva - Rodney Gilfry, Susanna - Alison Hagley, La Contessa d'Almaviva - Hillevi Martinpelto
Cherubino - Pamela Helen Stephen, Don Basilio/Don Curzio - Francis Egerton, Marcellina - Susan McCulloch, Dottor Bartolo - Carlos Feller, Antonio - Julian Clarkson, Barbarina - Constanze Backes

2.  A performance from Le Nozze di Figaro, a beautiful Susanna-Contessa duet 'Canzonetta sull'aria' performed by Lucia Popp and Gundula Janowitz.  Conducted by Georg Solti at Paris Opera Garnier in 1980.  Stage production by Giorgio Strelher. Cast: Jose Van Dam (Figaro), Lucia Popp (Susanna), Gundula Janowitz (Contessa Almaviva), Gabriel Bacquier (Almaviva), Federica Von Stade (Cherubino), Jane BerbiĆ© (Marcellina).

3. Le nozze di Figaro COMPLETE 3 hours / The Marriage of Figaro / The Day of Madness - KV 492 Mozart.  Uploaded by MrEsceha. Accessed May 1, 2018.  Info Film 1975 ( Cast Hermann Prey, Mirella Freni, Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau, Kiri Te Kanawa, and many, many more.

Video Credit:

Le Nozze Di Figaro - (complete) English Subtitles. YouTube, uploaded by Aimee. Accessed July 10,  2017.

Lucia Popp and Gundula Janowitz: "Sul' aria". YouTube, uploaded by muezzab. Accessed May 1, 2016.


Cairns, David (2007).  Mozart and His Operas.  Penguin Publishers.

(Originally published at, 2007, posted here with changes May 1, 2016.  Latest update: July 10, 2017.

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