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Sep 26 2019 - 03:11 PM
Today in History: The Magic Flute Premiers in Vienna

How could one not go to the opera in Vienna to hear Mozart? Although I am no buff in this field, I couldn't pass up the opportunity many years ago to see the Marriage of Figaro, an opera buffa in four acts, at the very Bergtheater where it premiered on May 1st, 1786. Prior to the performance one sunny Spring day, we visited librarians at the University of Vienna, intent on setting up a book exchange program with our respective institution, Teachers College, Columbia University. While in pursuit of mathematics textbooks to strengthen the David Eugene Mathematics Collection, we wed curriculum, libraries, and music. Mozart could never have been finer in our celebrated acquisition of the latest Austrian textbooks on teaching elementary and secondary school math!

An opera in two acts by Wolgang Amadeus Mozart, "The Magic Flute" premiered on September 30, 1791 at Vienna's Freihaus Theater auf de Weiden. The performance was a great success, drawing large audiences which continue to this day in theaters throughout the world. Among the most frequently performed of all operas, "The Magic Flute" tells of the young Prince Talamo who sets out to rescue beautiful Princess Pamina, daughter of Queen of the Night, who along with their companio bird catcher Papageno, must trust in the power of music to guide their dangerous journey. In the form of Singspiel, the opera contains both song and spoken word, precursor the modern musical.

The following articles are drawn from Proquest Historical Newspapers, which informs and inspires classroom teaching and learning.


  • Watch the December 30th, 2006 performance of The Magic Flute at The Metropolitan Opera in a shortened English-language version, with puppetry by Julie Taynor and award-winning cast.


  • Special News Slide, Courtesy of EdLab Studios


Need to keep current, look to the past, teach a topic? The Everett Cafe features daily postings of news from around the world, and also promotes awareness of historical events from an educational context. Be sure to check the news postings on Learning at the Library, where you can delve into history.

Posted in: Learning at the Library|By: Jennifer Govan|524 Reads