Sándor Balassa

The Man Outside


Social music listening session

The Man Outside, considered the most significant opera by Sándor Balassa (1935-), was premiered at the Hungarian State Opera House in 1978. Credited with the libretto based on Wolfgang Borchert's tragic and fateful drama was aesthetician Géza Fodor. Divided into five movements rather than acts, the opera took place somewhere in Europe, in wartime. Of the main character, Beckmann, the composer wrote, “...his principal characteristic is the fact that he remained human, and feels responsibility for his own actions and those of others.” The members of the chorus also become Beckmann, and as the character proliferates, his life experience also becomes universal. This compact masterpiece features unsettling recitatives, apocalyptic horror and amazing rhyming couplets.

Hungarian-language discussion programme


Opera House - Confectionary on the 3rd floor