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Sunday, February 11, 2024

A 'Magic Flute' explainer

Scene from a production of The Magic Flute, I can't remember which one. 

As I've written earlier, Mozart's opera, The Magic Flute, has elements from Freemasonry. Some productions depict an eye in the pyramid. I know that Robert Anton Wilson loved opera, but as far as I know, he did not write about the opera. But here is what Robert Shea wrote in a fanzine after going to see a production:

Last September, Yvonne and I saw the Lyric Opera’s production of The Magic Flute. I’m becoming more and more of a lover of Mozart’s music, and this has certainly done much to hasten the process. Of the libretto of Die Zauberfloete, no less an illuminated being than Goethe declared its “high meaning will not elude the initiated.” Besides the music, I was entertained by the sets, which were, of course, full of pyramids. One pyramid had the word “WEISHEIT” over its entrance, which I at first misread as “WEISHAUPT.” At the end, an orange sun arose and appeared centered in a gigantic triangle. The evening would have been complete if the sun had opened a bright red eye and winked at me. Highly recommended, in whatever form you might have access to it. Die Zauberfloete was first presented in Vienna on Friday, Sept. 30, 1791, fifteen years after the founding of the Bavarian Illuminati and six years after its suppression by edict of the King of Bavaria. 

Gramophone magazine has an article discussing the opera and rating various recordings of it. 


Guy Fox said...

Unless my memory is faulty (in which case I blame long covid), Bob did write about The Magic Flute in (I think) Nature's God, or maybe it was The Widow's Son (it's been 30 years since I read them, forgive me). Sigismundo saw a performance of the opera by his childhood frenemy Mozart & recognized the clear Masonic allusions. I had the chance to talk to Bob about Masonry once & while he was never a member, he knew quite a lot about the craft.

Eric Wagner said...

I love Bergman's film of "The Magic Flute".