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Rachel Willis-Sørensen © DR

Strauss J. Die Fledermaus

From 31 December TO 05 January 2022
Wiener Staatsoper - Wien
Program

Strauss J. : Die Fledermaus 170 mn

Cast
  • Wiener Staatsballett
  • Conductor
    Bertrand de Billy
  • Director
    Otto Schenk
  • Performers
    Gabriel von Eisenstein: Andreas Schager
    Rosalinde: Rachel Willis-Sørensen
    Adele: Vera-Lotte Boecker
    Prinz Orlovsky: Christina Bock
    Alfred: Jörg Schneider
    Frank: Wolfgang Bankl
    Dr. Falke: Clemens Unterreiner
  • Venue Info
  • Seating Plan
  • Synopsis

Wiener Staatsoper - Wien Location Opernring 2 - 1010 Wien Autriche

  • Venue's Capacity: 1709

The Vienna State Opéra is much more than just a local institution; it is a vital part of the city's identity and a national landmark.

As of the 17th century, the Hapsburgs lavishly patronized the opéra. Family members Ferdinand III and Leopold I composed for the théâtre, while Charles VI tried his hand at conducting the orchestra, and the Empress Maria-Theresa often mingled with the corps de ballet.

During the 19th century, the Karntnerthor-Theater was demolished and the présent building was constructed on the famous " Ring ". It was here that Mahler, with the help of the set designer Alfred RoUer, imposed a new style of performance, based on audacious stagings and a very précise interprétation ofthe score, which demanded countless rehearsals.

After the fall of the Hapsburgs, Richard Strauss took over the reins of the newly baptized Vienna State Opéra. Curiously enough, only one of Strauss'operas, THE WOMAH WITHOUT A SHADOW, was premiered in Vienna. Clemens Krauss and Karl Bôhm were to follow in his footsteps. Under Bôhm's direction, the Opera created its own Company, which was to serve as a model for several générations. Even the bombs that destroyed the opéra house in 1945 could not prevent singer s such as Elisabeth Schwarzkopf, Irmgard Seefried, Sena Jurinac or Erich Kunz from becoming legendary.

One musn't think that the Viennese applaud only their homegrown stars. In 1955, when Maria Callas came to sing LUCIA DI LAMMERMOOR in the reconstructed building with Karajan conducting, the public blocked traffic to pay tribute to the diva... in the street! Karajan succeeàed Karl Bôhm, and invited many international stars to corne sing on the Viennese stage. Works were henceforth sung in their language of origin, and coproductions with La Scala permitted the disco-very of voices such as that of Mirella Freni in LA BOHEME.

Ioan Holender has suceeded in deftly combining these international distributions with an ensemble System. He has scheduled many works never heard on the Viennese stage, which are now included in the Opera's répertoire, such as Verdi's JERUSALEM and Enesco's OEDIPE, furthering a policy instated under Claudio Abbado's brilliant direction. Whatever changes may now occur, the Opera will continue to stage at least 300 performances per season (an absolute world record ren-dered feasible thanks to the în-house technical crew, which hires no less than 250 people), and the public will continue to applaud the finest orchestra any amateur could wish for in the pit : the Vienna Philharmonie !

Wiener Staatsoper

The seating plan is given as an indication and has no contractual value.
The division of categories may differ depending on shows and dates.

Synopsis

Die Fledermaus

The wonderful operetta of Die Fledermaus, by the Austrian composer Johann Strauss, is a classic work of timeless beauty. Known in the original German libretto by Carl Haffner and Richard Genee as 'die Fledermaus' or 'the bat' in English, it was first performed at the Theater an der Wien in Vienna in 1874. Since then it has been produced across the world with showings in London, Paris, Munich and New York all following the initial popular reception. Indeed, all of the leading opera houses in the world hold the work as something of an essential in their catalogues.

HISTORY
The light opera of La chauve souris was inspired by the central themes and comic potential of identity and disguise. The lengths that certain people will go to in order to protect their freedom is brilliantly portrayed, with rousing song pieces formulating the need for expressions of justice and loyalty. The title of La chauve souris refers to a bat costume that lies at the heart of the central character's tomfoolery.

Act 1
Performed in the apartment of Gabriel von Eissenstin, the first act tells of his being summoned to spend eight days in jail for insulting an official. He decides to instead travel upon his friend Falke's invitation to a ball being held by Prince Orlofsky in the countryside. Eissenstein's wife is then visited by her former lover Alfred. When the jailer Frank arrives to take Eissenstein away, Alfred pretends to be the disgraced lord and serve his time so as not to arouse suspicion of an affair.

Act 2
Set in the summer house of Orlofsky, this act revolves around the further deceptions and deceits created by the lead characters. It transpires that Falke's invitation was a ruse to get revenge on Eissenstein for leaving him as the object of ridicule the previous year. He had been left drunk in the city dressed up as a bat (explaining the opera's title). With all of the characters using some form of disguise, the ball is a perfect comedic piece of changing structure and elements.

Act 3
After the previous night's wild party, all of the central characters find themselves in the offices of Governor Frank. In full realisation of her husband's deception, Rosalinde wants to begin divorce proceedings. Amidst various jail house lock-ups, Falke arrives with every guest of the ball. Making the declaration that the whole performance has been revenge for the bat costume fiasco, the situation is peacefully resolved. Eissenstein blames champagne for his various acts of wrong-doing and is sentenced to serve the full term of imprisonment.

THE MAIN ROLES
Gabriel von Eisenstein, disgraced nobleman, tenor
Rosalinde, Eisenstein's wife, soprano
Adele, Rosalinde's maid, soprano
Alfred, a singer teacher, tenor
Dr Falke, a notary, baritone
Frank, a prison governor, baritone

Wiener Staatsoper

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