Opera's Baddest Boy

Three of the world's most delightful operas — The Marriage of Figaro, Don Giovanni and Cosi fan tutte — were collaborations between Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and his librettist, Lorenzo da Ponte. This week, the L.A. Phil begins its presentation of the "Mozart/Da Ponte Trilogy," a three-year undertaking with one opera each season, with Don Giovanni, an irresistible blend of comedy, melodrama and the supernatural that takes as its delectable subject that legendary rake, Don Juan. Mozart considered this work an opera buffa, and da Ponte's libretto took the popular-for-its-day form of a dramma giocoso, or serio-comic play. Indeed, both composer and librettist have plenty of fun with their roguish anti-hero, who's as charming as he is incorrigible. But Giovanni is more than a romp — it's commonly hailed as the most perfect opera ever written, from the seamless plot to the ingenious libretto and the stunning arias that only get better each time you hear them. The Phil's production, conducted by Gustavo Dudamel, features a veritable showcase of talent, not the least of which is that sizzling young Polish baritone, Mariusz Kwiecien, who's famous across the globe for his portrayal of the naughty Don. The impressive cast also includes bass Kevin Burdette as Leporello, and sopranos Carmella Remigio, Aga Mikolaj and Anna Prohaska as Donna Anna, Donna Alevira and Zerlina, respectively. And how bad can the visuals be with stage design by architect Frank Gehry and costumes by Rodarte designers Kate and Laura Mulleavy? At Walt Disney Hall, 111 S. Grand Ave., dwntwn.; Sat., May 26, 8 p.m.; Upbeat Live pre-concert lectures one hour prior to perfs; $126-$164. (323) 850-2000, laphil.com.
Fri., May 18, 8 p.m.; Sun., May 20, 2 p.m.; Thu., May 24, 8 p.m.; Sat., May 26, 8 p.m., 2012

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Walt Disney Concert Hall

111 S. Grand Ave.
Los Angeles, CA 90012



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