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Opera Libretti

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Wagner Richard
Das Liebesverbot
Act I
Act II
Liebesverbot, Das (The Ban on Love)
  • Richard Wagner. Grosse komische Oper in two acts. 1836.
  • Libretto by the composer, after Shakespeare's play Measure for Measure.
  • First performance at the Stadttheater, Magdeburg, on 29th March 1836.

The Regent Friedrich bans love, but Claudio is found guilty of breaking the law. His sister Isabella, a novice, is persuaded to appeal for mercy, and Friedrich hypocritically demands her favours. She finds it possible, however, to send in her place the discarded wife of Friedrich, Mariana. His duplicity is now revealed, and a measure of free love is restored when the king returns.

Wagner's second opera shows some trace of the idiom that he was to make his own in his later work. The overture is very occasionally heard in the concert- hall, but the opera itself is seldom staged, except as a curiosity.


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