© Andreas Schlager
© Andreas Schlager
  • Großes Haus
  • Premiere 11.09.2022

Samson

Music drama in three parts by Joachim Raff // Premiere after 170 years

Almost 170 years after it was written, we present the world premiere of Joachim Raff's music drama »Samson«, which the young Swiss composer penned during his Weimar years. Raff came to Weimar in 1849 to assist the then court conductor Franz Liszt and to work towards his great dream: to make a living from his music as a composer. Along the way Raff wrote his dissertation on the biblical character Samson and created an opera based on the same material. But the dream of premièring Samson did not come true for Raff in either Weimar, Darmstadt or Wiesbaden, where he also tried his luck. Some of Joachim Raff's music is reminiscent of early Wagner, but it is bolder in its harmonies and takes a more classicist path in its permeability. Although he was a composer in demand during his lifetime, his refusal to align himself aesthetically with the two prevailing currents of Wagnerians and Brahmsians led to the oblivion of his compositions. We are now launching this masterpiece for the first time on the initiative of our chief conductor of the Music Theatre, Dominik Beykirch.

As early as in Joachim Raff's work, the legend of the Israelite freedom fighter Samson was stripped of any religious overtones and the protagonists' actions were motivated on their own authority. Samson, for example, whose entire divine strength is contained in his long hair according to the biblical narrative and who loses it through Delila's betrayal, decides in the opera to assimilate into the occupying forces by cutting his hair and thus loses the trust of his compatriots. The Spanish director Calixto Bieito tells the story of loyalty and betrayal as a timeless tale of a suicide bomber who takes an entire society to its death for his conviction. Faith appears here only as a cramped stage space on which the tragedy takes its course. The mechanisms that drive a person to such an extreme act are thus called into question and the conduct of society in relation to such an »individual act« is examined.

 

With the opera choir of the DNT and the extra choir consisting of students of the University od Music FRANZ LISZT Weimar. The Staatskapelle Weimar plays.

 

Supported by Acción Cultural Española (AC/E) in the Program for the Internationalization of Spanish Culture (PICE).

 

The introduction to the opera already starts at 5 pm on the premiere date.

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  • Dominik Beykirch (Musikalische Leitung)
  • Calixto Bieito (Regie)
  • Ingo Krügler (Kostüme)
  • Philip Rubner / Calixto Bieito (Bühne)
  • Judith Drühe (Dramaturgie)
  • Jens Petereit (Choreinstudierung)
  • Peter Sonn (Samson)
  • Uwe Schenker-Primus (Abimelech)
  • Taejun Sun (Micha)
  • Avtandil Kaspeli (Oberpriester des Dagon)
  • Emma Moore (Delilah)
  • Sayaka Shigeshima (Oberpriesterin der Astarte)
  • Oleksandr Pushniak (Seran von Ascalon)
  • Jörn Eichler (Gefangenenwärter)
  • Franziska Löber / Silvia Schneider (Frau aus dem Volke)
Sun 11.09.2022 // 18.00 o´clock Premiere

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Thu 15.09.2022 // 19.30 o´clock

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Fri 30.09.2022 // 19.30 o´clock

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Sat 08.10.2022 // 19.30 o´clock

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Fri 21.10.2022 // 19.30 o´clock

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Sat 29.10.2022 // 19.30 o´clock

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Fri 18.11.2022 // 19.30 o´clock

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Thu 01.12.2022 // 19.30 o´clock

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Sun 25.12.2022 // 18.00 o´clock

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