Today, the Deutsche Oper in Berlin presents the world première of L'Invisible, composed by Aribert Reimann, with a libretto in French by the composer after three short plays by Maurice Maeterlinck : Intruder, Interior and The Death of Tintagiles.
It is the composer's ninth opera, since Ein Traumspiel (Kiel, 1965). His operatic output includes Lear (Munich, 1978), Die Gespenstersonate (Berlin, 1984), Das Schloss (Berlin, 1992) and Medea (Vienna, 2010).
The three plays provided variations on the themes of the inescapable fact of death and people’s helplessness when faced with it. Spaces are created that are, at once, bourgeois salon and folk-tale castle, dream and nightmare vision. And the work features characters who, in their everyday conversations, try to distract people from the unutterability of their sorrow, cruelty, helplessness and fears. (reproduced from the Deutsche Oper Berlin website)The cast includes soprano Rachel Harnisch, mezzo soprano Annika Schlicht, mezzo soprano Ronnita Miller, bass baritone Seth Carico, bass baritone Stephen Bronk and tenor Thomas Blondelle. Donald Runnicles conducts the Orchestra of the Deutsche Oper. Vasily Barkhatov directs.
A perusal score is available on the Schott music publisher website. The required orchestra is the following :
- Piccolo, 2 Flutes, Alto Flute, Bass Flute, Oboe, English Horn, Heckelphone, Clarinet in E flat, Clarinet in B flat, Bass Clarinet in B flat, Double Bass Clarinet in B flat, 2 Bassoons, Contrabassoon ;
- 4 Horns in F, 3 Trumpets in C, 3 Trombones, Tuba ;
- Timpani, 6 Gongs, 2 Harps
- Strings (12-12-10-8-6).