Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart • October 12, 15, 18, 20, 2019
Charming nobleman. Serial womanizer. Sexual predator. Don Giovanni is all these and more. As the list of people out to get him grows longer, eventually his misdeeds catch up with him.
Don Giovanni leaves a trail of broken hearts, and worse, wherever he goes. He has his servant, the reluctant doormat Leporello, keep a journal of Don Giovanni’s many conquests. Completely without morals or a conscience, Don Giovanni sexually assaults Donna Anna, then kills her father the Commendatore, who had tried to come to her defense. He seduces young Zerlina on her wedding day. But all actions have consequences, as Don Giovanni is soon to learn.
An irresistible classic, Mozart’s Don Giovanni seamlessly combines comedy and tragedy with one of the great musical scores of all time to create one of the world’s favorite operas.
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The Artistic Team
Conductor - Antony Walker
Stage Director - Kristine McIntyre
Set Designer - R. Keith Brumley
Costume Designer - Mary Traylor
Lighting Designer - Marcus Dilliard
Wig and Make-up Designer - James Geier
Stage Manager - Cindy Knight
Asst Conductor - Glenn Lewis
Chorus Master - Mark Trawka
Associate Coach/Pianist - James Lesniak
Asst Stage Director - Matthew Haney*
Asst Stage Manager - Alex W. Seidel
Asst Stage Manager - Jin Ah Lee
+ Pittsburgh Opera debut
* Pittsburgh Opera Resident Artist
** Pittsburgh Opera Resident Artist alumni
Production owned by Lyric Opera of Kansas City
Listen to Pittsburgh Opera General Director Christopher Hahn give a brief synopsis of Don Giovanni featuring excerpts from this 1961 EMI recording with Carlo Maria Giulini conducting the Philharmonia Orchestra:
Click play below or download these excerpts for an offline treat!
- "Overture" - performed by the Philharmonia Orchestra
- “Lasciala, Indegno!” - sung by Eberhard Wächter as Don Giovanni, Gottlob Frick as the Commendatore and Giuseppe Taddei as Leporello
- "Madamina, Il Catalogo" - sung by Giuseppe Taddei as Leporello
- “Or Sai Chi L’Onore” - sung by Joan Sutherland as Donna Anna
- "Trema, trema, O Scellerato!" - sung by Eberhard Wächter as Don Giovanni, Joan Sutherland as Donna Anna, and the rest of the cast of the 1961 EMI recording
- "Deh Vieni All Finestra” - sung by Eberhard Wächter as Don Giovanni
- "Il Mio Tesoro" - sung by Luigi Alva as Don Ottavio
- "O Statua Gentillissima" - sung by Eberhard Wächter as Don Giovanni and Giuseppe Taddei as Leporello
- "Da Qual Tremore Insolito" - sung by Eberhard Wächter as Don Giovanni and Giuseppe Taddei as Leporello with Gottlob Frick as the Commendatore’s statue
- "Questo È Fin" - sung by the cast of the 1961 EMI recording
Setting: America, 1950’s
At night, in the street outside the Commendatore’s house, Leporello bemoans his fate working for the dissolute Don Giovanni. Suddenly Giovanni runs into the street pursued by Donna Anna, the Commendatore’s daughter, who accuses him of trying to attack her. The Commendatore rushes to his daughter’s aid and is killed by Giovanni. Anna asks her fiancé, Don Ottavio, to avenge her father’s death.
At a café the next morning, Giovanni and Leporello encounter one of Giovanni’s former conquests, Donna Elvira, who is still angry at Giovanni’s betrayal. Leporello tries to discourage her from pursuing Giovanni by showing her his catalogue with the name of every woman Giovanni has seduced.
Meanwhile, Masetto and Zerlina celebrate their upcoming wedding with friends. Don Giovanni asks Leporello to get rid of the groom. Alone with Zerlina, Giovanni persuades her to come away with him. Before they can leave, Elvira interrupts them and leads Zerlina away. Momentarily thwarted, Giovanni greets the mourning Anna and Ottavio, only to be embarrassed by the persistent Elvira, who denounces him as a seducer. Trying to dismiss her as a madwoman, he ushers Elvira off. Anna, in horror, recognizes him as her father’s murderer and calls on Ottavio to avenge her honor.
Later that afternoon, Giovanni looks forward to an evening of partying he has arranged in Zerlina’s honor. Zerlina begs the furious Masetto to forgive her. Anna, Ottavio and Elvira arrive in disguise, swearing vengeance, and Giovanni tells Leporello to invite them in.
Inside Giovanni’s nightclub, Leporello distracts Masetto while Giovanni dances with Zerlina, trying to drag her into an adjoining room. When Zerlina cries for help, Anna, Elvira, and Ottavio unmask and confront Giovanni, who escapes.
Under Elvira’s balcony, Leporello exchanges clothes with Giovanni to woo the lady in his master’s stead. Leporello and Elvira go off, leaving Giovanni free to serenade Elvira’s maid. When Masetto arrives with his friends to punish Giovanni, the disguised Don tricks Masetto and beats him up. Zerlina tenderly consoles him.
Elvira follows the disguised Leporello into a dimly lit church. Leporello tries to escape, but is discovered by Anna, Ottavio, Zerlina and Masetto. Mistaking servant for master, they join in denouncing the supposed Don. Frightened, Leporello reveals his identity and manages to escape. Ottavio asks Zerlina and Masetto to comfort the distraught Anna and go to the authorities for help. Left alone, Elvira thinks about her love for Giovanni in spite of everything.
Leporello finds Giovanni in a cemetery, where a statue of the slain Commendatore warns Giovanni of his doom. The Don forces the terrified Leporello to invite the statue to dinner only to be surprised by the Commendatore himself.
Ottavio urges Anna to stop grieving and accept his love. She implores him to wait until her father is avenged.
Late that night in the empty club, Giovanni orders Leporello to serve supper. Elvira arrives and attempts to persuade Giovanni to reform his ways, but he sends her away.
In a final confrontation with the Commendatore, Giovanni is finally forced to pay for his crimes.
-Courtesy of Kristine McIntyre
We want you to have the best experience possible at our performances!
- Run time: 3 hours and 10 minutes including one intermission
- Special effects notice: fake gunshots, fake cigarettes, and dry ice are used in this production
- Understand Every Word: Don Giovanni is sung in Italian, but has English supertitles projected above the stage at all performances
- Download the Don Giovanni study guide
- Parking Downtown: get real-time parking availability
- Pre-Opera Talks before each performance
- Audio Description available at The Benedum Center
- Braille Programs available at The Benedum Center
- Large-Print Programs available at The Benedum Center
The Pittsburgh Cultural Trust has implemented new security and bag policies, effective starting October 1, 2016, at the Benedum Center and their other venues.