Queen of the Night Aria for Bb Clarinet & Piano

By: Mozart Edited Keith Terrett
For: Solo Clarinet in Bb + piano
page one of Queen of the Night Aria for Bb Clarinet & Piano

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Mozart Edited Keith Terrett
Difficult (Grades 7+)
3 minutes
Classical music
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Arranged for Bb Clarinet & Piano, The Queen of the Night: she’s the fabulously terrifying character in Mozart’s The Magic Flute who most sopranos have a total love-hate relationship with.

Her aria ‘Der Hölle Rache’, more commonly known as the Queen of the Night aria, reaches an astonishingly high, Mariah Carey-level F6 above top C.

It’s an aria reserved only for the most daring sopranos, like Mozart’s sister-in-law Josepha Hofer (the original Queen of the Night) and German opera singer Diana Damrau.

But among the distracting coloratura passages of ‘ah-ah-ah-ah-aaah!’, what on earth is the Queen of the Night actually singing about?

The Magic Flute: A beginner’s guide to Mozart’s operas

To give some context to her anger, the aria comes at a moment when the Queen’s power and position is threatened by the sorcerer Sarastro, whose brotherhood her daughter Pamina is thinking about joining.

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