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I leave to you, dear reader, such inspection of the various nudes and undresses which
flit around the entrances and exit of the brothel's chambers as may intrigue you in the
final act. Hofmannsthal envisaged only a cheap hotel but, as Beecham hilariously relates
about the first Covent Garden production, our Lord Chamberlain insisted there could be
either a bed on stage or alternatively a vague reference to such a thing -- certainly
not both. Robert Carsen cares not a fig for such niceties, nor does his lecherous Baron.
But the latter gets his comeuppance when showered with bills for the evening's dalliance
and besieged by a mob of those claiming to be his offspring
[watch and listen -- DVD2 chapter 11, 41:20-43:00].
A scene from Act III. DVD Screenshot © 2004 ORF
Copyright © 1 January 2007
Robert Anderson, London UK