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Mandryka


'Mandryka' can also refer to...

 

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(Strauss: Arabella). Bar. A wealthy Croatian landowner, a big bear of a man whose uncle, also called Mandryka, was Count Waldner's best friend in his regiment many years ago, and it was to him that Waldner sent his daughter Arabella's photograph in the hope that the elderly man would want to marry her and save Waldner from his impecunious state. When the letter arrived in Croatia, the older man was dead and his nephew fell in love with the beautiful girl in the picture. He has come to ask for her hand in marriage. Mandryka explains all this to Waldner, and also tells him how rich he is. He tactfully suggests that maybe Waldner could use some ready cash at the moment—Teschek, bedien’ dich! (‘Pray help yourself’), he says, offering high-value notes one after the other. Waldner, of course, cannot resists this generosity, and agrees to introduce Mandryka to Arabella. They meet at the annual Cabbies’ Ball and there is an immediate mutual attraction. After they declare their love, Arabella says she will spend the rest of the evening bidding farewell to her girlhood, dancing with her old friends, before settling down with Mandryka. Later in the evening, Mandryka overhears her ‘brother’ Zdenka arranging for a young officer, Matteo, to have the key for Arabella's room that night. Overcome with distress, he provides champagne for all the guests, drinks rather too much himself, and flirts with the cabbies’ mascot (the Fiakermilli). He returns to the hotel with Arabella's parents, and accuses Arabella of being unfaithful to him. Zdenka, now revealed as the girl she really is, confesses that it is she who has been responsible for the mix-up and that it was all done for love. Everyone is forgiven and united with the one they love. The family all retire, either to bed, or to play cards. Mandryka remains in the hotel foyer, thankful that everything has worked out satisfactorily. Suddenly, down the stairs comes Arabella, carrying a glass of water to give to him—an old Croatian tradition to signify the end of her girlhood. He drinks from the glass and then destroys it so that no one else can ever drink from the same glass. Thus their love is sealed. Aria: Der Onkel ist dahin (‘My uncle is no more’); Ich habe eine Frau gehabt (‘I had a wife’); duet (with Arabella): Und du wirst mein Gebieter sein (‘And you will be my lord’); Die Herren und Damen sind einstweilen meine Gäste! (‘The ladies and gentlemen are meanwhile my guests!’); Sie gibt mir keinen Blick (‘She doesn't look at me’). Created (1933) by Alfred Jerger. Other famous interpreters include Alexander Kipnis, Hans Hotter, George London, Paul Schöffler, Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau, Bernd Weikl, and Wolfgang Brendel. See also article by the Earl of Harewood.

Subjects: Opera.


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