For Further Exploration
The Figaro Trilogy: The Barber of Seville, The Marriage of Figaro, The Guilty Mother (Oxford World’s Classics)
Figaro, one of opera’s most enduring characters, sprang from the imagination of French playwright Pierre-Augustin Caron de Beaumarchais. Translated by David Coward, this volume includes source materials for the beloved operas by Rossini and Mozart.
Not content with being a master watchmaker and plotter of plays, Pierre-Augustin Caron de Beaumarchais conceived and carried out a plan to aid the rebellious American colonists in 1776. Harlow Giles Unger tells the fascinating life story of the man who brought us Figaro and friends.
The Mozart-Da Ponte Operas
Mozart wrote his three most enduring operas in collaboration with Lorenzo Da Ponte. Andrew Steptoe explores the cultural and social context in which they were written, the practicalities of opera production in the time, and the place the works hold in the creators’ artistic development.
The Librettist of Venice
Rodney Bolt tells the story of Lorenzo Da Ponte, “Mozart’s Poet, Casanova’s Friend, and Italian Opera’s Impresario in America.”
Daniel Heartz’s collection of essays offers several essays concerning The Marriage of Figaro, including “From Beaumarchais to Da Ponte: The Metamorphosis of Figaro,” “Setting the Stage for Figaro,” and “Constructing Le nozze di Figaro.”
The Operas of Mozart
William Mann gives each of Mozart’s operas a separate chapter in which he considers composition process, source material, and musical analysis, as well as biographical details.
Mozart in Vienna, 1781-1791
Herbert Braunbehrens’s account of Mozart’s final years considers the intellectual, political, economic, and cultural landscape in which the composer lived and worked.