The Dallas Opera did a free live simulcast of Mozart’s last opera, The Magic Flute, last Saturday at the Cowboys Stadium. This was a non-threatening way to introduce The P to opera.
The Magic Flute is sung in German. The P is reading a little now but not really on a “subtitle” level. So we spent part of Saturday at the library trying to find a children’s book adaptation…to no avail. There was only one, and it was already checked out. We got a Star Wars book instead.
Online, at home, we found an e-book that seemed to be what we were looking for. We read the story together and looked at some illustrations at another website that seemed to tell more of the story. We took The Princess to Mimi’s house, and then we were off to the opera.
I didn’t notice the sock issue until seconds after I took this photo.
The P loved it! Most of the subtitles stayed on the screen longer than movie subtitles would, so he was able to read most of the lines as long as they had small words. And it certainly helped that we had read a couple of synopsis beforehand and were somewhat familiar with the plot. This was especially helpful for the few times that the captions blinked out and we had no clue what the characters were saying.
As it turns out, there is a reason there are not many adaptations of The Magic Flute for children. The first act is simple, but the second act is something like a commercial for Freemasonry. Also, it seems that in Mozart’s last days, he was a little misogynistic, or at least he created characters that were and then made them the heroes of his opera. Nonetheless, The Magic Flute works for children because the costumes are colorful, the music is pretty, the basic plot is very straightforward: boy meets girl, boy loses girl, boy gets girl.
This is the view from our seats. The picture looked a lot better in person.
The P wanted to stay until the end, but at 10:15 there was no end in sight and he was leaning into BabyDaddy and me pretty hard. We went home. But The P wants to go back. I hope that the Dallas Opera holds another event like this. It was so great.