Paul Hindemith

GermanLateNight


Operas in German, with Hungarian surtitles
The Long Christmas Dinner; The Overture to Der fliegende Holländer; Back and Forth; Sancta Susanna
The Overture to Der fliegende Holländer will take place in the inner courtyard of the museum building following a short intermission.
This programme presents, on a single night, four rarely played pieces by Paul Hindemith, one of the most important innovators of 20th century music. Hindemith's works are featured in the programme of the Around the Ring season as representatives of the trend in German music that sought to distance itself from Wagner's influence and move beyond it. His caricatures are more militant than the anti-Wagnerianism of Brahms or Bruch – as we will demonstrate by playing one sketch – an out-of-tune version of The Overture to The Flying Dutchman. His burlesque Hin und zurück exhibits the influence of the grotesque; the acerbic humour of the satirical/parodic work serves as a splendid counterpoint to the more loaded, poetic world of  Sancta Susanna, now being performed in Hungary for the first time. His treatment of the Thornton Wilder classic the Long Christmas Dinner, which follows a story spanning generations of a family and along with it, through a brilliant structural technique, the cycle of life and death, enriches the series of works by this extraordinary composer that are being shown this evening with yet new colours.

Partners: University of Theatre and Film Arts, The Liszt Ferenc Academy of Music, Hungarian University of Fine Arts

Course/department heads: Tamás Ascher, Eszter Novák, György Selmeczi (musical theatre directing course); Csaba Horváth (physical theatre choreography-directing course); Magdolna Jákfalvi, Péter Kárpáti, László Upor (theatre dramaturg course) / Andrea Meláth (Vocal and Opera Studies) / Edit Zeke (Scenography Department)

The Long Christmas Dinner, The Overture to Der fliegende Holländer, Hin und zurück, and Sancta Susanna are being presented together as parts of the GermanLateNight programme.

The Long Christmas Dinner 
The Long Christmas Dinner takes place in the dining room of an American family, the Bayards, and spans 90 years of the clan’s existence as it shows each of their family Christmas dinners over that time. Although the characters indicate the passage of years through their acting and the symbolic use of certain props, the cycle of life remains essentially constant. The characters enter the stage through a door of birth and, when their time is up, exit through the door of death. 
This piece was first performed in German in Mannheim in 1961, then it was premiered in English at the Juilliard School of Music in 1963, under the baton of Hindemith himself. The libretto was translated into German by the composer himself. The 1931 play by Thornton Wilder on which the opera was based was very influential in its era. The famous breakfast scene in the Orson Welles film Citizen Kane, for example, was inspired by Wilder’s play. 

The Overture to The Flying Dutchman
for String Quartet as Sight-read by a Bad Spa Orchestra at 7 in the Morning by the Well 
(für Streichquartett, wie sie eine schlechte Kurkapelle morgens um 7 am Brunnen vom Blatt spielt)
 
Hindemith's 1925 parody overture is not the only musical joke in the composer's ouevre. As the title itself suggests, the work however, was more than a cheeky distortion of Wagner's original: in its own era, it was an audacious provocation against the increasingly politicised cultural currents that idolised Wagner. 
The GermanLateNight programme will feature that original work for string quartet, now supplemented with a  double-bass, in an unusual venue: the courtyard of the Kiscelli Museum. To complete the experience, a choreography created especially for the occasion that makes use of Hindemith's brashness to inquire about the seemingly solid values of our cultural identity.

Back and Forth
Hindemith’s youthful pieces from the 1920s were deeply imbued with a sense of the grotesque. A perfect example for this is the parody-like Hin und zurück, which places humour at the forefront. Shorter than a quarter-hour in length, this scintillating, lively and at the same time satirically sketch-like scene was premiered in 1927 in Baden-Baden. It tells how a letter from the wife’s lover shatters the harmony of an apparently idyllic marriage: the story then goes on to tell us about a jealous murder and a penitent suicide which do an about-face halfway through thanks to some “higher power”, allowing everything to be sorted out in the end.

Sancta Susanna
Paul Hindemith is one of the most important composers of the 20th century’s music literature. Legendary for the rapidity with which he worked, Hindemith took all of 17 days to write Sancta Susannna, which was premiered in Frankfurt. August Stramm gave the subtitle “A Song at Night in May” to the expressionist libretto, which verged on blasphemy. The premiere stirred up an enormous scandal, which naturally enhanced Hindemith’s popularity, since the work broached a rather delicate subject by depicting on the stage the tension between the vows of chastity taken by Roman Catholic nuns and their repressed sexual desires.



The Long Christmas Dinner (Das Lange Weihnachtsmahl)

Opera in one act, in German, with Hungarian surtitles
ON THE OPERA'S PROGRAMME FOR THE FIRST TIME

General cast

Conductor
István Dénes
Lucia
Sárközy Xénia
Lucia II
Diána Kiss
Leonora
Andrea Brassói-Jőrös
Mother Bayard, Emeralde
Andrea Meláth
Geneviève
Anna Molnár univ.stud.
Charles
Jenő Dékán
Roderick
Lőrincz Kósa univ.stud.
Roderick II
András Farkas univ.stud.
Sam
Attila Szűcs univ.stud.
Brandon
Domonkos Blazsó

Credits

Librettist
Thornton Wilder
Director
Péter István Nagy univ.stud.
Set and costume designer
Sára Luca Jeli univ.stud.
Dramaturg
Júlia Sándor univ.stud.
Mágori’s translation of Wilder’s drama revised for this production by
Júlia Sándor univ.stud.

Premiere
May 13, 2018

Overture to The Flying Dutchman (Ouvertüre zum Fliegenden Holländer)

for string quartet, as if being sight-read by a lousy resort orchestra at 7 in the morning by the spa
Choreographed musical parody, without words
HUNGARIAN PREMIERE The Overture to Der fliegende Holländer will take place in the inner courtyard of the museum building following a short intermission.

General cast

Conductor
István Dénes
Dancers
Kristóf Widder / Boglárka Varga-Lakatos / Milán Újvári / László Takács / István Gyulai-Zékány e.h.

Credits

Choreographer
Péter István Nagy univ.stud.
Set and costume designer
Sára Luca Jeli univ.stud.
Dramaturg
Júlia Sándor univ.stud.

Premiere
May 13, 2018

Back and Forth (Hin und zurück)

Burlesque in one scene, in German, with Hungarian surtitles

General cast

Conductor
István Dénes
Aunt Emma
Szeőke Zsuzsanna
Robert
Bence Gulyás
Helene, his wife
Evelin Drahos univ.stud.
Doctor
Ágoston Cser univ.stud.
Nurse
Lőrincz Kósa univ.stud.
Wise man
Erdős Róbert univ. stud.
Maid
Felícia Bokor

Credits

Librettist
Marcellus Schiffer
Director
Bence Varga
Set and costume designer
Ilka Giliga
Dramaturg
Lili Fabacsovics univ.stud.
Hungarian surtitles
Lili Fabacsovics univ.stud.

Premiere
May 13, 2018

Sancta Susanna

Opera in one act, in German, with Hungarian surtitles
HUNGARIAN PREMIERE

General cast

Conductor
István Dénes
Susanna
Orsolya Sáfár
Klementia
Andrea Meláth
Old nun
Anna Fürjes univ. stud.
Servant
László Kurely e.h.
Maidservant
Zita Szenteczki
Choir of the nuns
Laura Topolánszky BA II. / Hiroko Katoh Part time student / Gabriella Fenyvesi BA I. / Lili Somogyi BA I. / Berill Ambruzs BA II. / Viola Kovács BA I. / Boglárka Borzási BA II. / Vivien Józan BA I.

Credits

Librettist
August Stramm
Director
Bence Varga
Set and costume designer
Ilka Giliga
Dramaturg
Lili Fabacsovics univ.stud.
Vivienn Nagy's rough translation revised for this production by
Lili Fabacsovics univ.stud.

Premiere
May 13, 2018

Events

2018. May 13., Sun, 21:00
2018. May 16., Wed, 21:00
2018. May 18., Fri, 21:00

Partner

Partner