Der Kreidekreis (opera)

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Der Kreidekreis
Opera by Alexander von Zemlinsky
Zemlinsky.jpg
The composer in 1908
TranslationThe Chalk Circle
LibrettistZemlinsky
LanguageGerman
Based onDer Kreidekreis [de]
by Klabund
Premiere14 October 1933 (1933-10-14)
Zürich Opera House

Der Kreidekreis (Op. 21), is an opera in three acts by Alexander von Zemlinsky to a libretto by the composer after the play Der Kreidekreis [de] by Klabund – a telling of the Chalk Circle story. The opera was written during 1930-31 and premiered on 14 October 1933 in the Zürich Opera House.[1] Among the singers were Artūrs Cavara,[2] Maria Madlen Madsen [de][3] Maria Bernhard-Ulbrich;[4] Fred Destal, Georg Oeggl and Peter Klein;[5] it was directed by Karl Schmid-Bloß[4] and the stage design was by Roman Clemens [de].[6]

It was planned to premiere the work simultaneously on four German stages: Frankfurt, Berlin, Cologne, and Nuremberg. Because of Zemlinsky's Jewish ancestry, this became impossible when the Nazis came to power early in 1933. Nevertheless, the work was performed in January 1934 in Stettin, Coburg, Berlin and Nuremberg, and in Graz in February due to the temporary lifting of certain restrictions.[7] The work was also performed in Prague and Bratislava.[8]

Zürich Opera revived the opera in 2003.[9] A new production was staged at the Opera de Lyon in January 2018 directed by Richard Brunel and conducted by Lothar Koenigs.[10]

Roles[edit]

Role Voice type Premiere cast, 14 October 1933
Conductor: Robert Kolisko[8]
Tchang-Haitang, a tea house girl, second wife of Ma soprano Madlen Madsen
Yü-Pei, First Wife of Ma mezzo-soprano
Ma, the tax collector bass Fred Destal
Prince Pao, honest official tenor Artūrs Cavara
Tschu-tschu, a dishonest judge bass
Tschao, law court official bass-baritone
Tong, marriage broker bass-baritone
Tschang-Ling, brother baritone Georg Oeggl
Mrs Tschang mezzo-soprano
Hebamme (midwife) mezzo-soprano
Ein Mädchen (a girl) soprano
2 Kulis, court clerks, police, soldiers, flower girls, a master of ceremonies

Instrumentation[edit]

Piccolo (doubling flute 3), 2 flutes, 2 oboes, English horn, 2 clarinets in B flat/A (2nd doubling E flat clarinet), bass clarinet, alto saxophone (doubling tenor saxophone), 2 bassoons (2nd doubling contrabassoon), 4 horns, 3 trumpets, 3 trombones, bass tuba, timpani, percussion, harp, celesta, banjo (doubling guitar and mandoline), strings

Onstage music: flute, harp, tambourine

Recording[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ The American Scholar, vol. 61, p. 587. 1992 "Even those operas considered to be his best, Kleider machen Leute and Der Kreidekreis, both based on good texts, suffer in..."
  2. ^ Liner notes Der Rosenkavalier, 1936, Teatro Colón Archived 2013-07-30 at the Wayback Machine., Marston Records]
  3. ^ Wildner-Partsch, Angelika (1982). Adler, Guido; Wessely, Othmar, eds. "Alexander Zemlinsky: Betrachtungen über sein musikdramatisches Schaffen anhand zweier repräsentativer Werke". Studien zur Musikwissenschaft (in German). Hans Schneider. 33: 55–125.
  4. ^ a b Suter, Paul (2005). "Maria Bernhard-Ulbrich". In Kotte, Andreas. Theaterlexikon der Schweiz (in German). Zürich: Chronos. p. 179.
  5. ^ "Das tägliche Kalenderblatt – 14. Oktober 1982", tamino-klassikforum, citing Reclams Opernlexikon (2001), p. 1419
  6. ^ Pisk, Paul A. (January 1933). "Zemlinskys Kreidekreis". Anbruch – Monatsschrift für moderne Musik. 15 (1): 145–147.
  7. ^ Reevers, Peter (1997). "III. Musikdramatische Ostasienrezeption". Das Fremde und das Vertraute: Studien zur musiktheoretischen und musikdramatischen Ostasienrezeption. Beihefte zum Archiv für Musikwissenschaft (in German). 41. Stuttgart: Franz Steiner Verlag. p. 204. ISBN 9783515071338.
  8. ^ a b Blackburn, Robert (1999). "Zemlinsky's The Chalk Circle: Artifice, Fairy-tale and Humanity" (PDF). Revista Música. São Paulo. 9 (10): 104. (Original publication)
  9. ^ Alexander Zemlinsky: Der Kreidekreis, October 2003, Zürich Opera House, cast and reviews (in German)
  10. ^ http://www.opera-lyon.com/spectacle/le-cercle-de-craie. Retrieved November 2017.
  11. ^ Der Kreidekreis, 1991 recording

External links[edit]