Music with Ease > 19th Century German Opera (except Wagner) > The Magistrate - Wolf
(German title: Der Coregidor)
An Opera by Hugo Wolf
Opera in four acts; music by Hugo Wolf; text by Rosa Mayreder-Obermayer. Produced: Mannheim, June 7, 1896.
THE CORREGIDOR (magistrate)
DONA MERCEDES, his wife
REFELA, his valet
TIO LUCAS, a miller
FRASQUITA, his wife
JUAN LOPEZ, the alcalde (mayor/judge)
PEDRO, his secretary
MANUELA, a maid
TONUELO, a court messenger
Act I. The miller, Tio Lucas, is living a happy life with his beautiful wife, Frasquita. Her love is so true that jealousy, to which he is inclined, cannot thrive. Jealous? Yes, he has a bump of jealousy. True, the Corregidor, who eagerly concerns him about the millers pretty wife, has one too. But no matter, he is a high, very influential functionary. Meanwhile Frasquita loves her Tio Lucas so truly that she can even allow herself a dance with the Corregidor. Perhaps she will cure him so, perhaps she will obtain in additional the wished-for official place for her nephew. The Corregidor too does not keep her waiting long and Frasquita makes him so much in love with her that he becomes very impetuous. Thereupon he loses his balance and the worthy official falls in the dust, out of which the miller, without suspecting anything, raises him up. But the Corregidor swears revenge.
Act II. The opportunity for this comes very quickly. As the miller one evening is sitting with his wife in their cozy room, there comes a knock at the door. It is the drunken court messenger, Tonuelo, who produces a warrant of arrest. Tio Lucas must follow him without delay to the alcalde who has lent himself as a willing instrument to the Corregidor. Frasquita is trying to calm her anxiety with a song when outside there is a cry for help. She opens the door and before it stands the Corregidor dripping with water. He had fallen in the brook. Now he begs admission from Frasquita who is raging with anger. He has also brought with him the appointment of the nephew. But the angry woman will pay no attention and sends the Corregidor away from her threshold. Then he falls in a swoon. His own servant now comes along. Frasquita admits both of them to the house and herself goes into town to look for her Tio Lucas. When the Corregidor, awakened out of his swoon, hears this, full of anxiety, he sends his valet after her; he himself, however, hangs his wet clothes before the fire and goes to bed in the millers bedroom.
(Change of scene). In the meantime Tio Lucas has drunk under the table the alcalde and his fine comrades and seizes the occasion to flee.
Act III. In the darkness of the night, Tio Lucas and Frasquita pass by without seeing each other. The miller comes to his mill. (Change of scene). Everything is open. In the dust lies the appointment of the nephew; before the fire hang the Corregidors clothes. A frightful suspicion arises in Tio Lucass mind which becomes certainty when through the keyhole he sees the Corregidor in his own bed. He is already groping for his rifle to shot the seducer and the faithless woman when another thought strikes him. The Corregidor also has a wife, a beautiful wife. Here the Corregidors clothes are hanging. He quickly slips into them and goes back to town. In the meantime the Corregidor has awakened. He wants to go back home now. But he does not find his clothes and so he crawls into those of the miller. Thus he is almost arrested by the alcalde who now enters with his companions and Frasquita. When the misunderstanding is cleared up, they all go with different feelings into the town after the miller.
Act IV. Now comes the explanation and the punishment of the Corregidor, at least in so far as he receives a sound thrashing and becomes really humbled. In reality the miller also has not yet had his "revenge," but he is recognized and likewise is beaten blue. That he must suffer in reparation for his doubt of the faithful Frasquita, and he hears it willingly for they have now come to a good understanding about everything.