Die Zauberflöte (The Magic Flute)
This is one of the Met’s most wonderful productions, Julie Taymor’s conception of the Magic Flute using giant puppets with great effect. Julie Taymor is famous for Disney’s Lion King and other hits, but her Magic Flute is in a class by itself. Of course, Mozart’s great music is still the main thing here.
Mozart finished the Magic Flute shortly before he died in 1791. Although on the surface the opera may appear to be no more than a fairy tale, this is a work of deep meaning and sublime music. Mozart himself was a Mason and many people find Masonic elements in this opera. The character of Papageno, the bird-catcher who aids Prince Tamino in his fight against the forces of ignorance and bigotry, is one of opera’s most wonderful characters. And his music is irresistible.
This is one of my favorite Met productions. For some reason the scene with the three little boys, who are seen sitting on a tree branch with long white beards, is the most memorable of all. Try to see it.