Schwanda, der Dudelsackpfeifer
Opera in two acts (five scenes)
Libretto by Miloš Kareš
German by Max Brod
Suitable for ages 16 and over
Oh, the joys of married life! But the conjugal relations between the bagpiper Švanda and his wife Dorotka are something else – all the more so once the robber chief Babinský appears on the scene, leading the husband to all kinds of adventures and the wife to infidelity. An encounter with a lovestruck Ice Queen, an execution stopped at the last moment and even a descent into Hell promise entertainment with an underlying message. Jaromír Weinberger’s opera Švanda dudák received its premiere in Prague in 1927 and became known in the German-speaking world in a translation by Max Brod. However, the National Socialists put an abrupt end not only to the run of success the work was enjoying, but to Weinberger’s entire career as well. In recent years, at least his popular opera Schwanda, der Dudelsackpfeifer, with its mixture of Bohemian folk music and late Romanticism, has made a successful comeback on the stage. With this work, Tobias Kratzer returns to Vienna and explores not just the colourful surface, but more particularly the dark secrets found by depth psychology in this fairy-tale world for adults.
In German with German and English surtitles
Introduction to the work 30 minutes before curtain-up