Cosi fan Tutte (includes Come scoglio, Un'aura amorosa, Soave sia il vento)
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

110

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Mozart is the most popular composer in the Ultimate Hall of Fame and this is the 11th of his 20 entries. This peaked at number 77 in 2002.

For Mozart, Così fan tutte signalled an external expression of faith in him as a composer, at a time when he needed a boost. The one-time boy wonder had realised, from early on, that music generated further music. If he could have a piano concerto ready by the time he hit town, to play when he got there, he might very well impress enough people to get a commission for, perhaps, another piano concerto.

So it proved with the opera The Marriage of Figaro. It was down to a revival of Figaro that Mozart was commissioned to write Così in 1789, ready for a 1790 premiere, on the day after his birthday.

Inga Filippova-Williams and Wallis Giunta in the Royal Conservatory of Music's 2009 production. Photo by Nicola Betts.