At the LA Phil, we've had ample time to study the romantic advice in The Marriage of Figaro, Don Giovanni and Così fan tutte during our two year Mozart/Da Ponte series, and now, we'd like to share that "wisdom" with you.
Read on to learn how you can lie, cheat, disguise, beg, trick and threaten your way to dating success.
1. Nothing shows your respect for a woman like betting on her affections.
People need to know you have the same faith in them as you do in your favorite racehorse. In Così fan tutte, the two soldiers, Ferrando and Guglielmo, believe their fiancées love them so much, they wager that nothing will make their beloveds unfaithful.
Wanna bet how that turns out?
2. Share your full uncensored dating history.
While talking to Elvira, Don Giovanni's servant counts the number of women from each country that his master has known (Biblically speaking): 640 in Italy, 231 in Germany, 100 in France, 91 in Turkey and 1,003 in Spain. Total: 2,065 women. And he didn't even have a Tinder profile.
Game over for the Don, right? Not so. After a "heartfelt" serenade, she's into him again! But of course, he's had a lot of practice…
3. Re-gift: especially if it’s got another guy's face on it.
Ladies, when you're in the truest of true love, and your boyfriend leaves for a few hours, you should:
a) Start flirting with the nearest mustachioed stranger.
b) Say romantic things like, "I feel I have a volcano in my bosom."
c) Exchange the locket with your boyfriend's face in it for some sweet new jewelry.
d) ALL OF THE ABOVE!!!! - Correct Answer
Dorabella from Così scored 100%. And men, FYI, a locket with your face in it is soooo 1770s. Barely more personal than a gift card to the local dressmaker.
4. Quote the law in your pickup lines.
Here's one that always works:
"You must be tired, because you’ve been running away from me through my dreams all night... And, as your feudal lord, I have the legal right to bed you before your husband on your wedding night. So... yeah.
The Count in Figaro gives his own version of this tactic an honest try.
5. Threatening to poison yourself is really sexy.
If you've wasted time perfecting the delicate art of flirting, take some advice from Ferrando and Guglielmo from Così: Burst into your intended's room and threaten to poison yourself until she agrees to go out with you. It proves you're not afraid of commitment.
6. Spice up your romance (or ruin someone else's) with role-playing!
Whether you're wearing a mask to seduce someone else's fiancée (Don Giovanni), disguising yourself as a sexy Albanian to seduce someone else's fiancée (Così), or cross-dressing because you got caught trying to seduce someone else's fiancée (Figaro), there's never a bad time to role-play... or seduce someone else's fiancée
What does all this advice add up to?
Although Mozart and Da Ponte are showing us mostly bad examples, not much has changed since the 1780s. People have always and will always try to scheme, trick or even blunder their way to find true love. For all our sakes, let's hope we get there!