Sunday, 05. November 2017, 19:30
Chinese Opera, Foto: Peter Chong
Even without a staging, costumes and film, Peter Eötvös’ Chinese Opera is »an opera to hear with your eyes« (Peter Szendy). Eötvös – who collaborated closely with Karlheinz Stockhausen for many years and was invited by Pierre Boulez to become chief conductor of Ensemble intercontemporain – developed a lively aversion to opera while he was a student in Cologne’s Studio for Electronic Music. But his Chinese Opera, which he composed in 1988, certainly played a role in rediscovering his spontaneous childhood enthusiasm for theatre:
»The title – chosen to evoke an everything-but-the-kitchen-sink quality of creative abundance – misled the conductor Kent Nagano to invite Eötvös to stage it, sight unseen, at the opera House in Lyon. ‹Happily – except it’s an orchestral piece›, Eötvös recalled in the New York Times. After the colourful, literally fantastical piece, there followed no fewer than ten operas.
»My Chinese Opera has very little to do with real Chinese opera. In China, every province has its own special theatrical style. It is named after the corresponding province in which it developed centuries ago and where it has been played ever since unchanged. Chinese Opera is written in relation to a staged and filmed presentation. Is it ‹opera› of my own ‹province›.« (Peter Eötvös)
In a large portrait concert featuring three masterpieces each written ten years apart, the 73 year-old composer will personally conduct the Klangforum Wien.
Sonata per sei (2006)
Chinese Opera (1985-1986)
Produktion Klangforum Wien, Wien Modern und Wiener Konzerthaus