Madame Butterfly Tickets
|Latest Madame Butterfly Tickets|
Ohio Theatre - Playhouse Square Cleveland
Jun 13 2015
Los Angeles Opera: Madame Butterfly
Dorothy Chandler Pavilion
Mar 12 2016
Details of Madame Butterfly and the Ticket Luck value
Madama Butterfly is an opera by Giacomo Puccini, with an Italian libretto by Luigi Illica and Giuseppe Giacosa. The opera was based partially on a short story by John Luther Long, which was turned into a play by David Belasco; infact was based on the novel, Madame Chrysantheme (1887), by Pierre Loti.
The first version of the opera premiered February 17, 1904 at La Scala in Milan, consisting of two acts, but eanred a tepid response. On May 28 the same year, a modified version was released in Brescia, in which the second act was divided into two with some other minor changes. Then, Puccini's opera was a huge success; it crossed the Atlantic to the Metropolitan Opera in New York in 1907. Today, the opera is enjoyed in two acts in Italy, while in America the three-act version is more accepted.
The opera, actually belongs to the city of Nagasaki, and was based on events which occurred there in the early 1890s. Japan's best-known opera singer Miura Tamaki won international fame for her performances as Cio-Cio-san and her statue, together with that of Puccini, can be found in Nagasaki's Glover Garden.
In the first act Lieutenant B.F. Pinkerton - a sailor with the USS Abraham Lincoln in the port of Nagasaki marries 15-years-old Japanese geisha Cio-Cio-San, or "Butterfly". Goro ? the matchmaker arranges the wedding contract and rents a little hillside house for the newlyweds. The American diplomat, Sharpless, a kind man, begs Pinkerton not to do so, when he learns that Butterfly innocently believes the marriage to be binding, may break the contract whenever he desires to. The lieutenant laughs at Sharpless's concern,in the mean time, Butterfly appears with her geisha friends, cheerful and smiling. Sharpless learns that, to show her trust in Pinkerton, she has renounced the faith of her ancestors and so she can never return to her own people.
The second starts with Pinkerton's return to US after his duty is finished, after promising Butterfly to return "When the robins nest again." Three years have passed. Butterfly's faithful servant Suzuki rightly suspects that he has abandoned them, but stays silent, showing his faithfulness to his mistress. Meanwhile, Sharpless has been sent by Pinkerton with a letter telling Butterfly that he has married an American wife. Butterfly (who cannot read English) is enthralled by the sight of her lover's letter and cannot conceive that it contains anything but an expression of his love. Seeing Butterfly's joy, Sharpless cannot bear to hurt her with the truth. When Goro brings Prince Yamadori, a rich suitor, to meet Butterfly, she reject with great offense that she is already married to Pinkerton. Goro explains that a wife abandoned is a wife divorced, but Butterfly declares boldly, "That may be Japanese custom, but I am now an American woman."
Act three opens at dawn with Butterfly still intently watching. Suzuki awakens and brings the baby to her. Suzuki persuades the exhausted Butterfly to rest. Pinkerton and Sharpless arrive and tell Suzuki the terrible truth: Pinkerton has deserted Butterfly for an American named Kate. The lieutenant is stricken with guilt and shame, but cannot come up with the guts to tell himself instead sends Kate to do so. Sharpless assures the annoyed Suzuki that Mrs. Pinkerton will care for the child if Butterfly will give him up. Pinkerton departs. Suzuki brings Butterfly into the room. She is radiant, expecting to find her husband, but is confronted instead by Pinkerton's new wife.
Some criticize that the opera has elements of racism. Since the 90s, Madama Butterfly as part of a colonialist projection of Asia. These critics conceive that it presents a "feminized" view of Asia in the form of Cio-Cio, and one that in the end of the play is discarded and inferior. One example of this critique is the postmodernist version M. Butterfly, by David Henry Hwang. Many Asians and Asian-Americans resent the passive and tragic stereotyping of Asians, and view it as part of a larger racist/colonialist mentality prevalent when the opera was written.
Some critics claim that the historical basis for the American character was likely a French doctor or Scottish engineer, and that the intention of making him an "arrogant" American had more to do with Europe's anti-U.S. sentiment in the immediate aftermath of the Spanish-American War in 1898. Furthermore, Japan in 1904 was not a colony of any country, including the U.S., and, on the contrary, had defeated Russia in the same year in the Russo-Japanese War.
Therefore the image of a colonialist America and a weak, passive Japan was possibly a projection of other Western/Asian relationships (e.g., Britain in China) on two third parties. Additionally, anti-American sentiment in Europe at the time was different from the more modern flavors: America was still seen as an extension of Europe proper, but in a junior sense, as the imperialist actions of the US back then were minor when compared with the major conquest and exploitation of Asia and Africa by European nations.
In disparity, one may consider that in 1904 the general opinion of Europeans was that both the United States and Japan were upstart powers with colonial aspirations.
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