Sunday, 16 December 2018

New programme book in my collection : 'Marx in London' by Jonathan Dove

Yesterday, I have received the programme book published by Theater Bonn for the world première of Marx in London by Jonathan Dove, first performed on December 9, 2018.

It is a 44 pages brochure. It contains :

- Die Handlung, 24 Stunden im Leben des Karl Marxs (Synopsis, 24 hours in Marx's life) ;
- Das historisch belegte Personal (the historic characters) ;
- Helmut Trotnow : Ein Leben mit und für Karl Marx : dennoch Karl, ich fühl' keine Reue ;
- Jonathan Dove über Marx in London, interview with the composer ;
- Jürgen R. Weber über Marx in London, interview with the author of the original scenario ;
- biographies of composer Jonathan Dove, librettist Charles Hart and Jürgen R. Weber ;
- Jens Baumeister : Die Weinfreunde Marx und Engel.

The programme doesn't include the cast or biographies of the artists.

I now have 608 programme books for contemporary operas. You can see all the scanned covers in this flickr folder.

Today : world première of 'Momo' by Wilfried Hiller in Munich

Today, the Gärtnerplatztheater in Munich presents the world première of Momo, a music theatre piece in 2 acts and 18 scenes composed by Wilfried Hiller, with a libretto in German by Wolfgang Adenberg based on the fairy tale novel by Michael Ende.

(c) Astrid Ackermann

Wilfried Hiller has already composed several stage works for children, including Das Traumfresserchen (1991), Peter Pan (1997), Pinocchio (2002) and Königin Gisela (2010).
Little Momo lives modestly in seclusion outside the gates of an idyllic small town. The little girl has lots of friends, as she possesses the rare gift of being able to listen to others. But one day, the mysterious Grey Gentlemen appear in the town and talk people into saving time. With the support of the wise master Hora, she declares war on the Grey Gentlemen. (reproduced from the Gärtnerplatztheater website)
The cast includes actress Anna Woll (Momo), tenor Maximilian Mayer (Gigi), baritones Holger Ohlmann (Beppo), Frank Berg (Herr Fusi) and David Spanhel (Nicola). Michael Brandstätter conducts Orchestra, Choir and Children's Choir of the Staatstheater am Gärtnerplatz. Nicole Claudia Weber directs.

The required orchestra is the following (reproduced from the full score) :

- 2 flutes (2nd doubling piccolo), oboe d'amore, 2 clarinets in Bb ;
- 3 horns in F, 2 trumpets in C, 2 trombones, tuba ;
- percussion (4 players) ;
- harp, piano ;
- strings.

The score is published by Schott Music. A perusal score is available on their website.

Wednesday, 12 December 2018

Programme book for 'Die Weiden' by Johannes Maria Staud in Vienna

This morning, I have received the programme book published by the Vienna State Opera (Wiener Staatsoper) for the world première performance of Die Weiden, an opera composed by Johannes Maria Staud with a libretto by Durs Grünbein, on December 8, 2018.

It is a 140 pages book. It contains :

- Inhaltsangabe and Ausführliche Inhaltsangabe ;
- several color photos of rehearsals ;
- technical details : complete cast with tessitura, litterature sources, location and time of the action, complete orchestral setting (with detailed percussion section and musicians on stage), duration, cast for the first performance ;
- detailed biography of the composer Johannes Maria Staud ;
- detailed biography of the librettist Durs Grünbein ;
- list of operas composed by Staud ;
- excerpt of Die Weiden by Algernon Blackwood ;
- excerpt of Das Herz der Finsternis by Joseph Conrad ;
- Andreas Lang : Ein Fluss als Protagonist ;
- Johannes Maria Staud : Anmerkungen über die Musik der Weiden ;
- excerpt of Der arme Spielmann by Franz Grillparzer ;
- Oliver Rathkolb : Die Todesmärche von Engerau ;
- Miklos Radnoti : Gewaltmarsch 1944 (poem) ;
- Peter Filzmaier : Die Welt der Demagogen und Populisten ;
- Franz Tumler : Sätze von der Donau (poem) ;
- Rotraud A. Perner : 'Aber vielleicht war all das nur Wahnsinn' ;
- Ilse Aichinger : excerpt of Unglaubwürdige Reisen ;
- Konrad Paul Liessmann : 'Dreitausend Jahre denken' ;
- Hans Dieter Schäfer : Die unsichtbare Tätowierung ;
- Andreas Lang : Aber Lea verkarpft nicht..., discussion with Johannes Maria Staud and Durs Grünbein ;
- Oliver Lang : Eine Oper zum Leben erweckt, dialogue with conductor Ingo Metzmacher ;
- Andreas Lang : Eine Oper als Interpretation der Wirklichkeit, dialogue with director Andrea Moses ;
- Urs Dürbein : epilogue of the libretto.

The book is entirely in German. The Vienna State Opera has also published an English version of this book.

I now have 607 programme books for contemporary operas. You can see all the scanned covers in this flickr folder.

The three libretti written by Durs Grünbein for Joahnnes Maria Staud (Berenice, Munich, 2004, Die Antilope, Lucerne, September 3, 2014 and Die Weiden) have been published in a single volume by Suhrkamp.

Sunday, 9 December 2018

Today : world première of 'Marx in London' by Jonathan Dove in Bonn

Today, the Theater Bonn presents the world première of Marx in London, an opera composed by Jonathan Dove, with a libretto in English by Charles Hart based on an original script by Jürgen R. Weber.

Jonathan Dove is a prolific opera composer. Among his previous works for the stage are Flight (1998), The Adventures of Pinocchio (2007), Swanhunter (2009) Mansfield Park (2011) and The Day After (2015).
A day in the life of the Marx family. One of the most famous philosophers and an icon of politics, founder of one of the most influential systems of thought, in his human all-too-human everyday life. But also a day in a one of the most modern cities, London : a crazy, entertaining, exciting, but also typical day in all its dynamics and contradictions. (freely adapted from the Theater Bonn website)
The cast includes baritone Mark Morouse (Marx), soprano Yannick-Muriel Noah (Jenny), soprano Marie Heeschen (Tussi), tenor Christian Georg (Freddy), mezzo Ceri Williams (Helene), tenor Johannes Mertes (Engels) and tenor David fischer (Spy). David Parry conducts the Beethoven Orchester Bonn and the Chorus of the Theater Bonn. Jürgen R. Weber directs.

Saturday, 8 December 2018

Today : world première of 'Die Weiden' by Johannes Maria Staud in Vienna

Today, the Wiener Staatsoper presents the world première of Die Weiden (The Willows), an opera in six parts, four passages, one prolog, one prelude, one interlude and an epilogue composed by Johannes Maria Staud with a libretto by Durs Grünbein.

It is the composer's third opera after Berenice (Munich, 2004) and Die Antilope (Luzern, 2014).
The opera is a journey 'into the heart of darkness' on a major river in Central Europe today, which can unquestionably be identified as the Danube. The events are fluctuating between a travel story of two lovers falling out with each other and a surreally distorted observation of the threatening developments today. We achieve this by means of pandemoniac hallucinations on the part of one of the protagonists, as well as by the transformation motif of a man-carp. (reproduced from the Breitkopf & Härtel website)
The cast includes mezzo Rachel Frankel (Lea), baritone Tomasz Konieczny (Peter), tenor Thomas Ebenstein (Edgar), soprano Andrea Carroll (Kitty), mezzo Monika Bohinec (Lea's Mother), tenor Herbert Lippert (Lea's Father), alto Zoryana Kushpler (Peter's Mother) and bass Alexandru Moisiuc (Peter's Father). Ingo Metzmacher conducts the Orchestra and Chorus of the Wiener Staatsoper. Andrea Moses directs.

The required orchestra is the following (reproduced from the publisher's website) :

- 3 flutes (doubling alto flute and piccolo), 3 oboes (doubling English horn and musette), 3 clarinets (doubling bassethorn and double bass clarinet), soprano saxophone, tenor saxophone, 2 double bassoons ;
- 4 horns, 3 trumpets, 3 trombones, 1 tuba ;
- timpani and percussion (4 players) ;
- harp, piano ;
- strings (

The performance should last about 3 hours, including the intermission. The score is published by Breitkopf & Härtel.