♪Mozart – Nozze di Figaro – act IV – “Contessa perdono”

Le Nozze di Figaro : The Marriage of Figaro
Opera buffa in quattro atti : Comic opera in four acts
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756 - 1791)
Libretto: Lorenzo da Ponte (1749 – 1838)
First performed: Vienna, Burgtheater 1st May 1786


DRAMATIS PERSONÆ:

COUNT ALMAVIVA – baritone.
COUNTESS ALMAVIVA – soprano, previously Rosina, ward of BARTOLO.
SUSANNA – soprano, the COUNTESS’ chambermaid, engaged to FIGARO.
FIGARO - bass, the COUNT’s manservant, previously the Barber of Seville, engaged to SUSANNA.
CHERUBINO – mezzo-soprano, in love with everyone.
MARCELLINA – mezzo-soprano, in love with FIGARO, previously BARTOLO’s housekeeper.
DON BARTOLO – bass, previously Rosina’s guardian.
DON BASILIO - tenor, previously music teacher employed by BARTOLO to teach COUNTESS, now the COUNT’s middleman for his various romantic affairs.
DON CURZIO - tenor, a judge.
BARBARINA – soprano, ANTONIO’s daughter and SUSANNA’s cousin, in love with CHERUBINO.
ANTONIO - bass, gardener in the COUNT’s gardens, Barbarina's father, Susanna's uncle.
Two young girls.
Chorus of Peasants.

Note: Perhaps three years previously, in the events of The Barber of Seville, Figaro helped the younger Count Almaviva win Rosina away from her cunning old guardian Bartolo, and was hired as the Count’s manservant in gratitude.  Now tired of his wife, the Count has for some time been looking elsewhere for female company, and his gratitude to Figaro has soured: not least because his eyes have lighted on Figaro’s fiancee, the Countess’ chambermaid, Susanna.  Being a young man of the Age of Enlightenment, the Count has recently revoked his traditional droit de seigneur, and is rather regretting it.  Bartolo, meanwhile, nurses a grudge against Figaro for his trickery in depriving Bartolo of his ward (and the dowry he hoped to keep by marrying her himself), while his former housekeeper, Marcellina, has her own designs on Figaro...

Final Act:

IL CONTE:                            COUNT:
[s'inginocchia ai piedi              [kneeling at the Countess's feet]
della Contessa]                                        
Contessa, perdono!                   Countess, pardon me!
                                        
LA CONTESSA:                         COUNTESS:
Più docile io sono,                  I am gentler,
e dico di sì.                        and I grant it you.
                                        
TUTTI:                               ALL:
Ah, tutti contenti                   Ah, all will now
saremo così.                         be happy.
                                        
Questo giorno di tormenti,           This day of torments,
di capricci, e di follia,            of caprice, of folly,
in contenti e in allegria            in content and happiness
solo amor può terminar.              only love can end it.
Sposi, amici, al ballo, al gioco,    Friends, lovers, to dance, to play,
alle mine date foco!                 set off the fireworks!
Ed al suon di lieta marcia           And to the sound of gay music
corriam tutti a festeggiar!          let us all run to celebrate!

Translation by Hannah Kilpatrick (http://ceirseach.blogspot.com/).  Free for private use; for use in program notes and/or productions, please let me know and give credit appropriately in the program.
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