Opera

Peter Sellars turns Mozart's last opera into a modern message of humanity in the face of terror

Peter Sellars turns Mozart's last opera into a modern message of humanity in the face of terror

As the world reacted to news of a white nationalist rally in Charlottesville, Va., that ended with one participant driving his car into counter-protesters and killing a woman, a crowd in this picturesque city — once a favorite Nazi retreat — made an offering with flowers and candles.

The offering had ostensibly nothing — but in fact had everything — to do with Charlottesville. The laying of flowers and candles before the arcade of the Felsenreitschule (a riding school transformed into an arresting theater) came at the start of the second act of Mozart’s “La Clemenza di Tito,” directed by Peter Sellars at the Salzburg Festival.

Former President Obama had responded to the...

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