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Chamber Opera and Der Wien of Vienna / Music Theatre::
Richard III.
A musical based on a tragedy by William Shakespeare
With music by Henry Purcell
By Kateryna Sokolova, Benjamin Bayl and Kai Weßler
Premiere: June 3, 2024

Third Richard – and threefold

Besides “Midsummer Night’s Dream”, “Dimon of Athens” and “The Tempest”, Henry Purcell used “Richard III” for one of his semi-operas (mixed music and dance with spoken part)? It was impossible to do accurate research in a hurry, but a director, a conductor and a theater actress found it desirable and managed to sell their musical theater project to Stefan Herheim’s Music Theater an der Wien.

This is how you experience “Richard III.” Henry Purcell’s music” is now in chamber opera, and the basic idea of ​​this minimal version, joined by five singers, is to make Richard a dancer (his body), an actor (his intellect) and a singer (his soul). It was unfortunate that the singer was unable to sing the premiere, but was able to play it, but it was good luck at the premiere that they didn’t have to cancel because they found a baritone to play Richard’s voice. Notes on the edge of the stage (since the original singer was not considered), wearing a mask so he didn’t have to move his lips like they were blowing air.

Director Katerina Sokolova Triple Richard very cleverly pulls off the evening, presented in a simple but clever stage design (Nicholas Webern), the private University of Music and Arts of the City of Vienna is a group).

The plot focuses on Richard himself as a master of disguise, and that’s true when you consider how dishonestly he plays his way to the throne and to Lady Anne’s bed. Always he has to talk to the audience and tell them what he really thinks. That is certainly the case with Shakespeare, with some famous material missing from the Schlegel translation (You are the ward In this SalaryA girl was released? You are the ward In this SalaryWon a wife?). And the most famous sentence is “Now he was Winter Our displeasure. York is famous for summer by the sun” says Hastings at last, as he puts the crown on his head.

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Richard III, his story, repeatedly immersed in music, especially broken into arias and ensembles (a beautiful duet of women included), can certainly only give an idea of ​​the story. Drama Kai Wessler After all, the murderous family history is brought up as an event—the essential political drama Plath certainly lacks here. (Both film adaptations by Laurence Olivier and Ian McKellen show that it is primarily about terrorism and the psychology of terrorism – how people react to a powerful, life-threatening figure (presumably there are people singing a song in our world. The song is about this and it’s a “citizen scene” in the middle of it all). Seems pretty redundant, with the men reading the newspaper and talking roughly in Viennese about Richard’s rise… Maybe a bullying scene should be a variation.

It is especially pleasing to have the villain’s story, immersed in music, and a small slice of the director’s art. Probably has Benjamin Bale In the third “Teacher” and lecture Bach Concert WienIt brought together Purcell’s music, which often “fits” and is often beautiful, even if it sometimes sounds a little late.

Richard © Herwick three pr vammer 14~1

The main burden of the evening falls on actor Richard – Soren Needle Proves to be a great orator and a dangerous comedian, while also being a dancer Fabian Tobias Huster him and Christoph Filler (who didn’t sing at the premiere) embraced it smoothly. All three are one unit, but they separate from time to time, dividing the mind and soul.

Two women and two men played multiple roles as actors and singers respectively. Louis Hart Anne, the woman who suffered most of all, Martina Neubauer The angry mother of the king, and Johannes Bamberger And Antoine Amariu Cut a fine figure and brought beautiful vocal complements to the powerful baritone Timothy Connor At the edge of the stage, the savior of the evening. Somewhere between Old England and the present day, tinsel magic was more popular.

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Renate Wagner

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