“Don Giovanni” Thrills At Mostly Mozart

The reviews of this Mostly Mozart evening, presented last month in Edinburgh and this weekend at Lincoln Center’s Rose Hall, were middling. The spare staging — a couple of black raised platforms and a group of white-bodysuit-clad university students in practical tableaux — was thought to be insufficient to showcase Mozart and Da Ponte’s drama. Bollocks. Performed by the superlative Budapest Festival Orchestra under the baton of Ivan Fischer, this production strips (in more ways than one) away

fussiness to concentrate on the words and music, which are nonpareil. If the cast offered no indelible performances, they made a thrilling ensemble. The trios and quartets were beautiful, and the sextets — Mozart’s sung sextets are, for me, musical crack cocaine — were electric. The remaining two performances (Friday night and Sunday matinee) are sold out, but if you love Mozart you should show up outside the theatre and busk, beg, or barter for a seat.

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