Letter: 'Magic Flute' character learns lesson in running his mouth

Letter: 'Magic Flute' character learns lesson in running his mouth

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Levi Hernandez

Levi Hernandez as Papageno and Katrina Galka as Papagena in Opera Theatre of Saint Louis’ 2014 production of The Magic Flute.

Photo by Ken Howard

I recently took a virtual trip to London to see Mozart’s "Magic Flute" at Covent Garden. In this delightful yet profoundly beautiful work, there is a character named Papageno. He carries a little set of pipes that he uses for tweets. He’s a dopey motormouth. He lies, taking credit for a heroic deed that he did not perform. For this, he is punished with a padlock on his mouth so that he can no longer speak or tweet. All he can say is “um, um, um, um.” Is there a possibility of such a padlock for a president?

(With apologies to Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and Emanuel Schikaneder: Papageno is a completely lovable goofball.)

Margaret Gilleo • Ladue

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