Let us see whether my clemency or the treachery of others will be the more constant
- Titus, Acte II, scène 17
If the liaison between Titus and Berenice inspired one of the greatest French playwrights, it was the Roman Emperor himself, an incarnation of absolute sovereignty, that occupied the central position in what was to be Mozart’s last opera. Marking a return to opera seria in its formal constraints and choice of subject, the work nevertheless defies expectations, its humanity shining forth through an obscure clarity in which the hidden melancholy of a score composed by an already declining Mozart is discernible. Willy Decker’s streamlined production offers an exploration of the nature of power in which forgiveness and reconciliation are examined in all their strength and fragility.