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Adlais 214: Magic Flute

Cover Image

Magic Flute
a Mozartian diversion

WA Mozart
Arranged Derek Smith

Duration c. 10' 43" minutes
For Flute, Viola & Harp
Catalogue No. Adlais 214
ISMN 979-0-57032-232-9 (score & set of parts)
Edition Date 2015
Score Format Score & three instrumental parts
A4 Stapled
Suitable for Intermediate Trio
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Further Information

MOZART arr. DEREK SMITH: Magic Flute: A Mozartian Diversion

Following an economic and cultural recession, opera may seem a luxury. “Magic Flute” reduces Mozart’s profligate cast of sixteen principal singers, chorus, large orchestra with special instruments, children, animals which include a terrifying snake, with simulated fire and water effects, to the more tractable ‘flute, viola and harp’, taking but 12 continuous minutes rather than well over two hours, making it more suited to the attention span of children and contemporary listeners.

Bringing Mozart up to date has eliminated certain regrettable elements of political incorrectness which infect his original. There is now but a brief genuflection to pillars and temples which could so easily offend those of other faiths. For the same reason, the High Priest Sarastro, a misogynist of dubious morality, has been airbrushed out together with the “three boys”, doubtless products of his abusive cult. Likewise eliminated are the “Trials”, which carry with them some risk of personal failure. Papageno, after his heartfelt call for support and understanding by the community, does not seriously attempt to hang himself but, instead, is rewarded by immediate access to Papagena, the love of his dreams, being the instant gratification all now deserve. Briefly acknowledging the contribution of that least successful of immigrants, the unfairly maligned Monostatos the Moor, the apotheosis of this Trio celebrates the Queen of the Night who, despite an evil reputation propagated by her ageist detractors, triumphs over the illusory “good” which permeates Schikaneder’s libretto without thought for the fate of her companions, the “three ladies”, so reflecting society’s lack of outreach, albeit in an earlier and less responsible age.

Derek Smith


Front cover image: Looking back at Jicin by Catherine Baker
60 x 76cm Acrylic on canvas (2013)

Adlais Music Publishers are very grateful to Catherine Baker for her kind permission to use this image of her painting “Looking back at Jicin” on the front cover of this score.

“This painting was produced as part of a 2-week residency in Jicin, a beautiful little town north of Prague, in the Bohemia region of the Czech Republic. The brief was to produce work to celebrate the town and the surrounding area. I came across this view with the lush green fields in front, which I thought would be a perfect place to sketch and base one of my paintings on. Barely discernible in the foreground are some Roman numerals, from the inlaid house numbers on doorsteps in one of Jicin's streets, left as a memorial to a once-thriving Jewish community.”

Catherine Baker


Sample Page

Sample of the music