Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy (1809–1847) Die beiden Paedagogen MWV L 2
Singspiel in 1 Act duration: 90' Text: Johann Ludwig Casper
solos: SSTBarBarB – choir – 184.108.40.206. – 220.127.116.11. – timp – str
Text by Johann Ludwig Casper after Eugène Scribe
Place and time: An Austrian country seat, around 1810
Characters: Herr von Robert, Lord of the Manor (bass) - Carl, his Son (tenor) - Elise, Robert’s Cousin (soprano) - Kinderschreck, Schoolmaster of the village (baritone) - Hannchen, his Niece - Gardener (soprano) - Luftig, Valet (baritone) - Fritz, Servant (silent part)
Carl is in love with his cousin Elise, but he must obey his father’s will and become a schoolmaster - with the help of an "appropriately strict private tutor” who has been hired in Vienna. The gardener Hannchen, in her turn, has fallen in love with a young man from Vienna, but she must follow her uncle Kinderschreck to the country. Kinderschreck’s introductory aria "Probatum est” can be seen as a precursor of Lortzing's "Zar und Zimmermann”. The "tutor” who arrives from Vienna, however, is none other than Hannchen’s paramour Luftig, who has disguised himself as a schoolmaster to replace his ailing master. Put to the test by Kinderschreck, the two schoolmasters find themselves in a quarrel quartet involving Pestalozzi and other luminaries. When Carl and Luftig organize a party together behind Kinderschreck’s back, the fraud is exposed along with the secret romances, and the lovers are allowed to come together. Mendelssohn’s early work was no doubt performed only within his family circle during his lifetime. The first public performance took place in Berlin in 1962.