Invito a cena col morto: Don Giovanni Tenorio tra macabro e comico
Tirso de Molina’s "Burlador de Sevilla y Convidado de piedra" is the first theatrical representation of the tale of Don Juan Tenorio and it stages one of the most famous macabre themes of Spanish Baroque literature: ‘the feast with the statue’. In the earlier versions, the dramatic and moral element prevails over the comic one and Don Juan is not the charming seducer we are used to see, but a feeble man. The essay focuses especially on the three moments of the encounter between Don Juan and Don Gonzalo’s ghost. In these moments, the theme of the macabre is livened up by comic elements (as common in the plays of the time), although they are rather subdued and secondary in respect to the principal message the viewers should get and which should lead them to an austere lifestyle. The article follows the changes undergone by the play (with attention to the moments of the encounter at dinner and the balance between the moral theme and the comic elements) in the canovaccio "Convitato di pietra" by Andrea Cicognini and the one by Enrico Preudarca, in the plays of Molière, Goldoni, Mozart, Lorenzo Da Ponte and José Zorrilla, and later through the Decadent movement, when the aesthetic dimension becomes dominant.
EUT Edizioni Università di Trieste
Gianni Ferracuti, "Invito a cena col morto: Don Giovanni Tenorio tra macabro e comico", in: Prospero. Rivista di Letterature Straniere, Comparatistica e Studi Culturali, XV (2009), pp. 75-97