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The Essential Florencia en el Amazonas Playlist

Recommended by director Joshua Borths

In anticipation of our production of Florencia en el Amazonas this fall, stage director Joshua Borths has compiled a playlist of additional music by Florencia en el Amazonas composer Daniel Catán, and other related media to help better acquiant you with this beautiful 20th century masterpiece.

Act 1 Scene 1 of Florencia en el Amazonas sets the tone for the opera. It's lush music and voices rising and falling mimic the ebb and flow of the Amazon River. Catán used the experiences he felt during his travels through the Amazon, where he learned about the dangers of river navigation, and also about the psychological states the Amazon induces in its travelers; the way it conjures up their most secret desires and deepest fears



Florencia en el Amazonas premiered in 1996 in Houston as the first Spanish opera in the American opera repertoire. It was perceived as a gamble for some companies, who felt much more comfortable presenting tried and true classics. Washington National took that chance, presenting Florencia en el Amazonas shortly after its premiere. Thankfully, that gamble has paid off as nearly 20 years later, Florencia continues to make her presence known in season after season across the U.S. 

  Catán's last opera before his death, Il Postino, who's premiere featured legendary tenor Placido Domingo as Pablo Neruda who befriends a postman in revolution era Chile. 


A very short (less than 10 minutes) documentary on the importance of magical realism in Latin American art and the key to understanding Florencia en el Amazonas.



A very brief history of the opera house in Manus, where the titular Florencia is heading to at the start of the opera.