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Opera

Flammen

Erwin Schulhoff

Immortality as punishment? Don Juan in the role of Ahasver

The State Opera
Premiere production
Musica non grata
English subtitles
German subtitle

Choose date

  • June
  • November
    June 2022

    Sunday 12. 6.
    19:00

    Tickets available

    Featured programme ND+
    1. premiere
    Premiere
    Premiere production
    Musica non grata

    Wednesday 15. 6.
    19:00

    Tickets available

    Featured programme ND+
    2. premiere
    Premiere
    Premiere production
    Musica non grata

    Saturday 18. 6.
    19:00

    Tickets available

    Premiere production
    Musica non grata
    English subtitles

    Friday 24. 6.
    19:00

    Tickets available

    Premiere production
    Musica non grata
    English subtitles
    November 2022

    Thursday 17. 11.
    19:00

    Booking not started yet

    Premiere production
    Musica non grata
    English subtitles

    Saturday 26. 11.
    19:00

    Subscription sale

    Premiere production
    Musica non grata
    English subtitles

    Basic information

    Venue

    The State Opera

    Approximate running time

    2 hours 10 minutes, 1 intermission

    Language

    In Czech, subtitles in German, English

    Premiere

    June 12, 2022

    The production is staged by the famous Spanish director Calixto Bieito, the holder of many prestigious international awards, and conductor Jiř Rožeň.

    The Don Juan story, widely known due to W. A. Mozart’s splendid adaptation, is treated in a very different way in Erwin Schulhoff’s opera: Don Juan is punished for his sins by becoming immortal; instead of being redeemed by death, he is doomed to eternal suffering. The modern-time “Don Juan in a tuxedo”, jaded by all the pleasures and joys of life, is determined to reform his libertine ways and strives to find spirituality – yet just keeps finding sensuality and lust. After being rejected by a woman personifying Death, he tries to kill himself, but to no avail – he must live on …

    Cast

    • 2021-2022
    • 2022-2023

    About

    State Opera Chorus
    State Opera Orchestra 

    In the first few decades of the 20th century, Prague was a truly multicultural city, with the Czech and German artists inspiring each other. The  German-speaking writer and translator Max Brod suggested to the composer Erwin Schulhoff, also a native of Prague, that a new play by the Czech writer Karel Josef Beneš might make a good basis for the libretto to his new opera.  Even though Beneš was yet to attain international acclaim for his psychological novels Uloupený život (Stolen Life) and Kouzelný dům (The Magic House), which would be adapted as films both at home and abroad, Schulhoff was intrigued by his unconventional retelling of the Don Juan legend. At the time, he was influenced by late Impressionism and Expressionism, but, like many other composers, he was engrossed by jazz and had a penchant for experimentation. All these inclinations duly reflected in his one and only opera, Flammen (referring to flames of love and death), blending elements of opera, pantomime and tone poem, which, following its premiere, in Czech, under the title Plameny, on 27 January 1932 in Brno, fell into oblivion for decades. Interest in the piece only revived in the 1990s, when, using Max Brod’s German translation, it was performed as Flammen in concert on 16 April 1994 in Berlin. In the same year the opera was published with the German text by Schott. The State Opera will stage the work with K. J. Beneš’s original Czech libretto.

    When working on Flammen, its creators could not have anticipated that they would meet similar fates. For his participation in the anti-Nazi resistance movement, Beneš was sentenced to death, yet the verdict was changed to imprisonment (1941–1945). Schulhoff did not live to see the end of World War II. Labelled as a “degenerate” (Jewish) artist, he was incarcerated in the Wülzburg prison camp in Bavaria, where on 18 August 1942 he died of tuberculosis.

     

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    Practical information

    Where to buy tickets

    The National Theatre sells tickets up to 6 months in advance. On 1 May at 9am we started selling tickets for performances of Drama, Ballet, Opera and Laterna magika until the end of October 2022.


    When purchasing online, you can get an e-ticket. You can pick up printed tickets in person at the box offices of the National Theatre.

    What to wear?

    By their appearance, attire and behaviour, the audience is obliged to adhere to the accustomed practice expected from them when attending a theatre performance.

    Parking at the State opera

    While visiting the State Opera, you can take the slip road on Wilsonova street from the left lane close to the State Opera building to the Parking Centrum above-ground garage. The parking fee is 40 CZK/h.

    Buffets at the State Opera

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