I recently discovered that I’m going to be a parent. While I hope to expose my child to the broadest possible set of cultural experiences, I do rather wonder what he/she/it will take away from the dramatic efforts of the great composers, to wit:
What is the moral of this opera?
Don Giovanni: No matter what he says, don’t sleep with him.
The Magic Flute: Join the Freemasons if you want a girlfriend.
Cosi Fan Tutti: Girls are taken in by feeble disguises and so can’t be trusted.
Tosca: Don’t date a singer. Or an Artist.
Salome: Walk carefully around manhole covers.
Feel free to use the comments to make other suggestions…
Peter Grimes: Stay away from creepy dudes. Unless you’re a creepy dude, in which case stay away from little boys. Or villagers.
The Ring: Put your jewelry somewhere safe.
Madama Butterfly: Don’t trust the U.S. Navy and marriage brokers.
Carmen: Girls, stay away from boys who play with sharp swords. Guys, don’t trust a girl who works in a cigarette factory.
Aida: Popularity is fleeting. One moment you can be led triumphantly through the streets and buried alive the next.
Parsifal: Sorry, I dozed off sometime during hour 5.
Bily Budd: If you are a baritone, do your sit-ups!