Cosi fan tutte
(“They All Do It”)

Updated June 26, 2020 | Infoplease Staff
Music:Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Libretto:Lorenzo da Ponte
Premiere:Vienna, January 26, 1790

Mozart's final comic opera, Cosi fan tutte, a laughing look at the twists and turns of romantic love, was originally attacked for portraying faithless women. Some early performances were even accompanied by apologies for the frivolous plot. The story begins in a Neapolitan caf é , where two young men, Ferrando and Guglielmo, argue with the older and more skeptical Don Alfonso that their fiancées, the sisters Fiordiligi and Dorabella, would never betray them. Aided by Despina, the sisters' maid, the men hatch a plot to test the women's loyalty. They disguise themselves as soldiers and woo each other's lovers, managing through various tricks to win over the initially reluctant women. As deeper feelings surface, however, the suitors become uneasy with their antics, and once the deception is unmasked, the four reunite, though who pairs up with whom remains a mystery.

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