The Most "Villainy" Operatic Villain

After doing some intense research on operatic villains I decided to make my own list of operatic villains and figure out which one of them is the most "villainy". I have decided to extend this list into a few blogposts instead of simply narrowing it down to the worst of the worst.

(Also, Mesphistopheles from Faust is NOT going to be on this list because it's not fair for all the other mortal villains. He lies on a totally different level of Villain and none of the other guys can compete with him. Sorry to all you Mephisto fans.)

This is Part 1 of my Operatic Villain posts, with the least evil characters featured.

Luca Pisaroni as Count Almaviva
Count Almaviva from Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart's The Marriage of Figaro
Just a jealous husband. He literally has nothing better to do than to suspect his wife of infidelities, while he himself runs after any hoop skirt that passes by. I'm sorry if you don't know the plot of The Marriage of Figaro because it's absolutely AWESOME. Unfortunately I'm not motivated enough to summarize it in this blogpost, so google it or something. What's the worst thing he does? I'd say that sending a 13 year-old boy to army camp merely because you're way too jealous of your wife is kind of nasty. He's just a kid who is discovering life and sending him away because you consider him a threat to your marriage is silly. At least Cherubino should feel proud that Count Almaviva considers him a worthy opponent!

Mariusz Kwiecen as Don Giovanni

Don Giovanni from Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart's Don Giovanni
Controversial. Very controversial. I found so many different opinions of Don Giovanni's evilness. (Once again, Mozart's operas are too complicated plot wise for me to go through the trouble of trying to explain them in a comprehensible way. Google is your best friend.)

From one side, Don Giovanni is pretty bad. Despite his seemingly harmless behavior, he basically stripped several noblewomen of  the honor they carried and then added insult to injury if they called him out on it. From the other side, they fell for him themselves. He abused Leporello when he burned the midnight oil and forced his servant to stand guard outside in the cold while he "entertained" himself. Pretty bad. Zerlina's sexual assault is a little shaky because from what I gather it's not a given that he actually tried to do anything violent. Or maybe he did, I don't know. Wasn't there, sorry.

Personally, I wouldn't put Don Giovanni on this list. Compared to the endeavors of the Duke of Mantua, this guy is innocent. He didn't kidnap anyone, and the only man he killed was in a dual initiated by the Commendatore himself. 

Marco Vinco as Don Alfonso
Danielle De Niese as Despina
Don Alfonso and Despina from Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart's Cosi fan tutte 
Nah! One was an old man with nothing better to do than take advantage of other's stupidity while Despina was desperate to have her revenge on her mistresses who got more luxuries than she could even wish for. Not evil at all. The two couples were to blame for everything that happened. 

Count di Luna from Giuseppe Verdi's Il Trovatore
Dmitri Hvorostovsky as Count di Luna
He's not that bad, right? I'm not sure he should even be on this list, but society pressures me into including him so here you are.
He desperately loves Leonora, but she's a weirdo who loves a gypsy troubadour, Manrico, who also happens to be Count di Luna's long lost brother! Manrico's so-called mother, Azucena, accidentally burned her own baby instead of a noble baby when she was avenging her mother's death. What? Count di Luna can't seem to get his useless army of soldiers to catch Manrico and Leonora, who manage to escape from him every single time. The power of true love? And then the count finally captures Manrico when he gets Azucena; and then he wants Leonora to give herself to him in exchange for Manrico's life, but she poisons herself instead. Running to Manrico, she tells him that he is free to go and he accuses her of being unfaithful but when she starts dying realizes that she literally gave her life for him and decides to stay in jail instead of running off. When he is executed, Azucena tells Count di Luna that Manrico was, in fact, his brother, and he believes her! What? Why? And while di Luna laments that now he'll have to live on while his brother and love are dead, Azucena cries out Mother, you are avenged! So where is the count's crime of evilness in this? All he was doing was protecting his family name and trying to get his crush to like him back, right?

Check out Part 2 


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