With his wealth of compositions, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart is one of the most favored composers in Western music, and well-liked at The Santa Fe Opera. This year they are presenting an earlier work of Mozart’s, “La Finta Giardiniera.” This opera, with its unrealistic plot, is enjoyable, no matter how nonsensical the action on the stage seems. Mozart’s music is so agreeable that it renders weaknesses in the storyline irrelevant.
The orchestra is, as usual, fantastic, as is the conductor, Harry Bicket. Bicket is also very pleasing to watch. It sounds as though this bouncy, energetic score derives some panache from the man with the baton.
The set is exactly what one would expect for a Mozart piece — however, this doesn’t mean it’s boring. Audience members can settle in their seats and view the extraordinary Santa Fe sunset happening in the background, making each performance unique. The costumes, as well, are fairly typical, but again, not in the least boring. The Podestà looks magnificent, as does his niece, Arminda.
Even the plain black clothing in which the servants are dressed is beautifully tailored, and the colors and fabrics provide a wonderful visual balance with the stage.