Love is in the air this Valentine’s Day, but in the world of opera, Romance is always brewing, often with disastrous consequences. There are some pretty bad romances on the operatic stage, so stay clear of characters like these when searching for a soul mate!
Don Giovanni: Mozart’s charismatic Don may be irresistible at first, but you’ll know right away that his love will never be yours alone; in fact he’s made a list! (But Luca Pisaroni makes it almost OK) Here’s the “Catalog Aria”:
Turandot: Puccini’s icy princess is the operatic definition of High Maintenance! “Roses are red, violets are blue, can’t answer my riddles? That’s the end of you!” Christine Goerke heats up the Ice Princess’s game:
Lieutentant B.F. Pinkerton: As the song goes, “If there’s a wrong way to do it, a right way to screw it up, nobody does it like….” Madame Butterfly’s tragic foil. This carefree, careless Naval officer does every single thing wrong by the innocent Cio-Cio San in Puccini’s heart-breaking love story. He’s sorry at the end, but by then its waaaaay too late. Here, Patricia Racette and Marcello Giordani share a fleeting moment where love rules.
Carmen: This player certainly does not hide her Mean Girl streak, in fact she lays it all out in her very first aria! Carmen tells it like it is, but the hapless Don Jose is hopelessly in love, to everyone’s downfall. Elina Garanca speaks her truth!
The Duke of Mantua: This guy wouldn’t last five minutes in the company of real live women. Verdi’s Bad Boy from Rigoletto is not exactly picky about his conquests, yet he has the nerve to sing about how ladies are the fickle ones! The Duke is spouting nonsense, but it IS Piotr Beczala, so…
Can you think of other operatic relationship disasters? Please leave them in the comments below!
Maggie Clennon Reberg
Maggie is the host of The KDFC Morning Show, 6-10 Monday through Friday, and 7-10 on Saturday.