Premiere performances: 17 and 19 June 2021 at the State Opera
György Ligeti’s Le Grand Macabre will receive its Czech premiere. The one and only opera written by the Hungarian-Austrian composer, one of the major representatives of the 20th-century avant-garde, is a truly remarkable work, one that in many a respect surpasses that which is commonly expected from a piece of this genre.
Loosely based on the Belgian avant-garde dramatist Michel de Ghelderode’s play La balade du grand macabre, Ligeti provocatively branded it “anti-anti-opera”. Le Grand Macabre presents an extremely bizarre apocalyptic vision of a world gone mad, teeming with characters of such telling names as Nekrotzar, Piet The Pot, Clitoria, Spermando …
Ligeti’s spectacular operatic fresco, set in a fictitious city bearing an equally telling name, Breughelland, not only shocks by featuring harsh, spine-chilling and perverse images, it is also striking in terms of the score, with the musical idiom encompassing conventional instruments, but also giving scope to a large variety of unprecedented sounds, produced by car-horns, electric doorbells, a sledgehammer, an alarm clock, paper bags, a tray full of crockery, a saucepan, a pistol and other items.
Le Grand Macabre had its world premiere in Stockholm in 1978. Later on, Ligeti made considerable revisions to the opera in preparation for a production at the Salzburger Festspiele in 1997.
By their appearance, attire and behaviour, the audience is obliged to adhere to the accustomed practice expected from them when attending a theatre performance.
No waiting. For your benefit, please pre-order your food and beverages at the bar to minimize waiting in the queue!