Adaptation, Enactment, and Ingmar Bergman’s Magic Flute

For all of its manifold musical glories, The Magic Flute was and is a theatrical work, meant for production and performance, and that repeatedly. As such, I will be concentrating on the opera’s theatrical and cinematic elements. This article treats Ingmar Bergman’s felicitous 1975 film film adaptation of the opera. Those inclined can find much to complain about in Bergman’s cinematic version of Mozart’s opera, but I would like to suggest that, with sympathy and openness, this complaining could give way to approval and great gratitude. In this Magic Flute, we have an interpretation worthy of its source, which is saying a great deal.

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