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Content available remote Libuše poprvé na operní scéně 19. století
Among the operas including the subject of the Bohemian royal legend, is Eduard Lannoy's Libussa (Brno 1819), an isolated case. From the late 17th century, Libuse, a Bohemian Queen (sic!), became a leading character of several German baroque operas. In the early 18th century, she appeared in the Italian opera seria, also in Prague. The author of the first German 19th century Libuse (Konradin Kreutzer's Libussa was given its premiere in Vienna only at the end of 1822) treated this work as a serious singspiel, interspersed by comic episodes. The libretto, probably also written by the composer, stresses liberalism in the traditional legend elements. The form of the opera is traditional, vocal numbers are bound together by spoken dialogues. The vocal and instrumental setting is mature, but the work lacks originality of invention.
In his commentary to the trends in the Slovak music theatre in recent years the author draws attention to the emergence of operetta which stood at the very beginning of the musical productions. Film and the interest of drama directors in music theatre have largely contributed to the theatricalisation of what used to be exclusively singing productions and today, we are the witnesses of music theatre without live orchestra.
Content available remote Komédie modelov. Poznámky k hudobnému divadlu Igora Stravinského
No one doubts the importance of Stravinsky's work for development of musical theatre. Some prominent scholars, however, still see his works for theatre as 'chiefly musical compositions'. In reality, it is the theatre component that constitutes Stravinsky's works for stage. Not only he knew the Avant-garde theatre well, but already in the Act One of Le Rossignol, he reinvents himself as a creator of musical theatre with specific aesthetic views, admirable taste and originality. In Stravinsky's works, music and theatre share common rules of the game. The principle of 'Trennung der Elemente' (Brecht) and Stravinsky's 'paradoxical' handling of historical and folklore models is applied throughout the work. In addition, the Renard and Mavra sketches prove that Stravinsky applied his tectonical structuring paralelly in music and the text. His abrupt alternation of blocks dissolves the traditional logical structure of an art piece in both music and theatre.
The opera Die Burgfrau (Brno 1832) is based on the local folk tale of the White Lady, a friendly ghost, who once used to reside in the castle of Pernstejn. In the first half of the nineteenth century pieces as such were shown on stage of the City Theatre at the Zelny trh in Brno, often of Singspiel quality. The opera of the White Lady surpasses all of them in structure and thorough elaboration. In spite of their young age, the authors represented first-class among contemporary artists in Moravia. The author of the libretto Antonin Bocek (1802-1847) was a known Moravian historian, whose premature death prevented him to finish his life-work. When composing the opera, the composer Antonin Emil Titl (1809-1882) was double-bass player in the Brno theatre; later, he went on to become bandmaster in Vienna. The opera combines elements of the tale with historical events. In part, it presents historical figures, and even gives the date of 1545. The ghost of the White Lady interferes in the events, in which love wins over hatred, and evil is punished. The opera met with warm welcome when first performed in Brno, and was later shown in Olomouc as well. However, it did not make it to the Vienna stage.
Content available remote ON THE DRAMATURGY OF MARTINU'S OPERAS (K problematike dramaturgie opier Martinu)
It is well known that Bohuslav Martinu never solved in two operas the same dramaturgic issue. Each opera has a new dramaturgic form, and each time, the quality of a libretto and the requirements of a medium via which the opera was transmitted were captured differently. Martinu was in constant quest of parallels and contrasts between the various options of style plurality of his music and the plurality of the forms of dramaturgic solutions of the 20th century opera. He was able to garner ingenious dramaturgic solutions from these parallels, which have retained their attractiveness for both the music theatre and contemporary opera.
The paper deals with theoretical discourse in the field of opera in Slovakia. It focuses on the director Branislav Kriška, whom musicologists and theatrologist consider to be the most significant and, from the aspect of the aesthetic formation of the musical theatrical art, the most influential Slovak opera director of the latter half of the twentieth century. His theoretical articles published in specialized journals and programme booklets and his monograph on Giacomo Puccini, operas in the verismo style, and their staging practices, are not only valuable materials for understanding the director’s staging signature but, in the context of twentieth-century Slovak opera theatre, they represent a unique theoretical activity of a practicing theatre maker. Kriška drew on Walter Felsenstein’s concept of stage performance and his understanding of musical theatre as a musical dramatic scenic art, in which the staging and the vocal performance elements are complementary and equal.
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