Oh, this is simply horrible! I want the performance to be a success...but I don't want Maria to be abducted!The Impresario
The Impresario is a minor non-player character in Final Fantasy VI. He is in charge of the Opera House and its latest production, "Maria and Draco". He constantly fears the production will face trouble, and on several occasions his fears are vindicated when the production is disastrously interrupted.
The Impressario wears a tailed black suit jacket with a blue lining, a white shirt, a bowtie, and blue pants. He has a unique animation among NPCs where he presses his hand to his forehead, often used when he is concerned about something.
The Impressario is a very anxious and melodramatic man who is paranoid the opera will have problems and fears any disruption would ruin the show. However, once convinced of a way to work around these problems, he eagerly jumps at the chance to participate in a scheme with the Returners.
The Returners met the Impresario at Owzer's Mansion, fretting about a letter he had received and searching for the star of the opera, Maria. When he saw Celes he mistook her for Maria before realizing his mistake, and rushed off, dropping the letter. Locke learned from the letter that Setzer, an infamous gambler, had declared his intent to abduct Maria and make her his bride. Setzer owned the world's only airship, the Blackjack, and the group decided to arrange a meeting with Setzer to use his airship to reach Vector.
At the Opera House they met with the Impressario. He initially refused to let the group kidnap Setzer, as he believed Setzer would make his entrance at the end of the first act, and such a disruption would ruin the performance. Because Celes bore an uncanny resemblance to Maria, Locke suggested that Celes take Maria's place to act in the opera and allow Setzer to abduct her, and she could sneak the rest of them onto the airship. The Impressario loved the plan and readily agreed.
During the performance, Locke found a letter from Ultros, warning he would stop the opera before Setzer could arrive. Locke relayed it to the Impressario and the two noticed Ultros in the rafters above the stage with a massive weight he was preparing to drop on Celes. The Impressario told Locke and his allies how to reach the rafters, and the group rushed to stop Ultros. However, Ultros knocked them off the rafters and they all fell to the stage, knocking out the two leads. The Impressario climbed onto the stage and bemoaned the production was ruined if the two heroes were incapacitated, but Locke quickly improvised that he would be the one to win Maria's hand. Though aghast at Locke's acting, the Impressario decided to make the most of the situation and ordered the band to play music for the party's fight with Ultros. As Ultros fled Setzer arrived and made off with Celes, and the Impressario asked the audience to wait until Act 2.
In the World of Ruin, the Impressario is once against in a tizzy; the Earth Dragon has sat itself on the stage and refuses to move. The party dispatches the dragon and the Impressario thanks them for their aid.
- The 2013 All Saints Wake (Halloween) event in Final Fantasy XIV features a circus troupe led by a man named "The Impressario".
Behind the scenes
In the Super NES and Playstation translation of the script, the conductor of the Phantom Train is also named "Impresario". This is likely due to an error on the part of the translators: the Japanese title of the Phantom Train character is "Conductor", while the Impressario's Japanese title is "dancho", and both words can be used to refer to the leader of a musical troupe. Seemingly, the translators initially named the two Conductor before changing the title of the Opera House leader to Impressario, and the title of the Phantom Train character was changed as well by oversight.
An impresario is a person who organizes and often finances concerts, plays or operas, analogous to an artist manager or a film/television producer.