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What Would You Chop?

Posted at 4:34 PM on December 21, 2006 by Rex Levang

If you had to abridge one of the world's best-loved operas down to a one-act format -- what would you leave out?

That's the challenge that faced the team who crafted the 90-minute family-friendly version of Mozart's "Magic Flute" that the Metropolitan Opera is currently presenting. (You can hear the broadcast on Dec. 30 -- or even see it live in a Twin Cities movie theater. It's the celebrated Julie Taymor production, so the visuals should be a treat.)

One thing to go -- the entire overture (except for its first six notes). If you're going to edit Mozart, you might as well be bold. . . .