Ariadne on Naxos
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2 h 50 min

Ariadne on Naxos

Richard Strauss
About

A spectacular show, full of ideas and surprises, harlequinades and wit in the spirit of commedia dell’arte, circus-like fantasy and the myth of the Minotaur, Venetian carnival and bacchanalia in the finale... The directors of the production were provoked to come up with this extraordinary blend by the fantastic idea underlying the libretto written by Hugo von Hofmannsthal, a celebrated German poet, considered second only to Goethe: that of combining high tand low arts, opera seria and buffa. And all this was employed to tell a story of love, both the ideal, romantic one, and that which is more mundane, sensual. The result was an intriguing work, full of fancy and imagination, with music which gathered raving reviews. After premiering in its final version in 1916, Ariadne gained a permanent place in the repertoires of music theatres the world over and is still doing very well today. The present production is, however, the debut of both the title and the composer on our stage.

Carmen
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3 h 20 min

Carmen

Georges Bizet
About

In its first version Carmen was written in a form similar to a comic opera, where songs and spoken parts intertwined. This fact, according to the then custom, blocked the work’s way to the stage of Great Paris Opera and the first night had to take place in the Comic Opera. However, the audience of that place preferred light and funny musical comedies and did not appreciate the tragic ending of Bizet’s work - this is one of the reasons of a cold reception of Carmen. However the more important reason for an initial distaste of the public and critics for the opera was its innovative content. Bizet broke the unwritten tradition according to which topics of operas were to be taken from the world of myths and legends or old historical periods and life of the so called “higher spheres”. Instead of conventional heroes, often full of artificial pathos, the composer brought up living and contemporary people - soldiers, smugglers and female workers from a cigar manufactory. 

Cinderella
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1 h 20 min

Cinderella

Gioacchino Rossini
About

The ballet rendition of the popular fairy tale of Cinderella, two mean stepsisters and a cruel stepmother has been prepared by Giorgio Madia, an eminent choreographer from Milan. The former soloist with the Bejart Ballet and the San Franciscoo Ballet, today he works on his own productions on the musical stages of Vienna and Berlin. Cinderella in his interpretation is enhanced with new meanings, while still retaining the universal sense of the tale. Combining subtle lyricism with irony and a sense of humour, the production uses an original choreographic language and proves surprisingly spectacular. The music is compiled from fragments of Rossini's operatic and chamber compositions. This moving performance of superb comic quality is bound to delight young and adult audiences alike.

Countess Maritza
next performance
25.01.2018, 6:30 pm
3 h

Countess Maritza

Emmerich Kálmán
About

“Countess Maritza”, the second success of the Hungarian composer Emmerich Kálmána after “The Gipsy Princess”, secured him a permanent place among the most outstanding operetta authors of the 20th century. The piece tells about true love, free from any dependencies, such as property, position in the society or the social hierarchy, although these circumstances are discussed here most. Therefore, the piece is pretty enjoyable, as it incorporates the yearnings of a huge part of the humankind. Moreover, Kálmán seduces with effective melodies, coloured with Hungarian folklore and Gypsy tunes. Most arias and duets have detached from the original work and gained individual popularity, like Maritza’s csardas “I hear Gipsy violins”, the duet of Maritza and Zsupan “Let's Go to Varasdin” or the evergreen aria “Play Gipsy”.

Spectacular music, beautiful voices, a funny intrigue, gentle humour, rich costumes with sublime details, and a wonderfully distant world that brings joy and consolation

Eugene Onegin
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3 h

Eugene Onegin

Piotr Czajkowski
About

Tchaikovsky described his romantic opera, based on Pushkin`s novel in verse of the same title, as lyrical scenes, underscoring the poetic nature of the work. The directors of this staging have followed the same path; without highlighting any realistic details, they have conjured up a poetic, lyrical tale of lost illusions, of time which heals all wounds but also takes one ever farther away from the excitements of youth, strips all the characters in the story of their dreams and frustrates their desires. Metaphoric images, based on the motif of melting ice, seem to complement the poignant music, vibrating with passions, expressing yearning, sadness and regret.

King Roger
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1 h 50 min

King Roger

Karol Szymanowski
About

This is what Józef Kański wrote about Karol Szymanowski’s opera:
“‘King Roger’ is an unusual opera. Unusual was already the idea of the libretto that was born in the composer’s mind and executed with great mastery by Jarosław Iwaszkiewicz (…). Finally, unusual was the music that connects bold modernity with a par excellence operatic melodiousness of solo parts and the theatrical bravura of group scenes.”

La Bohème
next performance
01.12.2017, 6:30 pm
2 h 50 min

La Bohème

Giacomo Puccini
About

‘...freshness, youth, passion, cheerfulness, tears shed in silence, a love that gives you joy and makes you suffer,’ Puccini wrote about the perfect theme for an opera which he had found in Murger’s novel Scènes de la vie de bohème, which he himself could relate to through his own experience of several years spent as a student and artist at Milan’s conservatory. The duo of Giacosa and Illica magically turned the material into a superb libretto, not without some intervention of the composer himself. The latter endowed the tale of the Parisian bohemian life with a melodious phrase congenial with the situation, proving himself a master in building up the mood, inciting yearnings, and moving the audience. The residents of a poor garret are about to abandon their artsy spaces and walk into a life ruled by different laws. For now, however, they are experiencing  their first loves, and the first complications that come with them, as well as the first misfortunes in their lives, including death, which forebodes the end of their beautiful amusements, the end of carefree times, and thus a goodbye to youth. But let us not ponder on this yet, let us forget all about it and let ourselves be overtaken by the joyful mood of Musetta’s waltz, or the enticing words of the main heroine, ‘Si, mi chiamano Mimi’(‘Yes, they call me Mimi’) and Rodolfo’s bold attempt at seduction, ‘Che gelida manina’ (‘What a cold hand’). We’ll be better off that way.

La Traviata
next performance
02.02.2018, 6:30 pm
2 h 55 min

La Traviata

Giuseppe Verdi
About

"La Traviata", based on the novel "The Lady of the Camellias" by Alexandre Dumas, fils, is a story of a fallen woman, a high-class Parisian courtesan and her salvation through a sacrificial offering of love and death. Krzysztof Nazar dispenses with the historical costume and the social context of the plot, focusing instead on the characters’ psychology, emotions and motivations. In his interpretation, Violetta Valéry faces the fact of terminal illness and the inevitability of the end of life. Disillusioned, she decides to enjoy the remaining time to the maximum. But that is exactly when she encounters true love, and with it values that change her vision of the world and people. The production addresses the theme of love tinged with a sense of passing away, it shows the human strength of character and struggle against the fear of death, it tells a tale of sacrifice and loneliness, of the attitudes and choices we face regardless of times or place.

Madama Butterfly
next performance
16.02.2018, 6:30 pm
3 h

Madama Butterfly

Giacomo Puccini
About

The opera tells the story of a relationship between a geisha Cio-Cio-San and a lieutenant of the United States Navy. While the American never takes their marriage seriously, Cio-Cio-San, like Penelope, remains faithful to her beloved. The long time spent on waiting for his return and her fervent hopes confronted with the cruel truth bring the heroine to a tragic end. The Krakow staging was prepared by Waldemar Zawodziński (direction and stage design), Tomasz Tokarczyk (music direction), Maria Balcerek (costumes) and Janina Niesobska (choreography and stage movement).

Norma
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No dates available
3 h

Norma

Vincenzo Bellini
About

“Norma” is believed to be a perfect opera in which the composer, Vincenzo Bellini, demonstrated inexhaustible melodic invention; the musical layer was given a sublime and noble expression, while the themes are “sculpted in white marble”. The title character is a high-priestess torn between her love to a man who is an invader and her social service, and between her love to own children and her desire for revenge as a betrayed mistress. The conflict between love and obligation, and the private and public sphere is very emotional here, truly human and universal.

Opera Unlimited
next performance
28.11.2017, 11:00 am
1 h 30 min

An educational spectacle in which the orchestra and soloists of the Krakow Opera will stage fragments of the greatest opera, operetta, musical and ballet works. The purpose of the performance is to show young spectators how a theatre spectacle is created and to introduce them to names and the most eminent composers and performers of these works through an anecdote and an attempt to define genres of a musical theatre.

 

Orpheus and Eurydice
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2 h

Orpheus and Eurydice

Christoph Willibald Gluck
About

The opera’s libretto is based on the Greek myth. Eurydice, wife of a Thracian singer Orpheus, is bitten by a viper and dies. To get her back, Orpheus descends to the underworld. He almost succeeds in leading Eurydice out of the dead but he breaks a divine ban, looks at her and loses his beloved forever... Orpheus and Eurydice is the thirtieth of 107 operas left by Christoph Willibald Gluck (1714-1787) - German composer, Kapellmeister at the Emperor’s court in Vienna, author successful also in Paris and acclaimed to have been the reformer of opera. Giorgio Madia, an Italian by birth, working as a choreographer for the most important European stages, the author of Cinderella staging at the Krakow Opera a few years ago, is preparing Orpheus and Eurydice (the French version) for the first time, especially for the Krakow Opera. It will be both an opera and a ballet spectacle. Every opera character has its counterpart in a character from the ballet ground.

Rachmaninoff. Shchedrin... (The Tragedy of Don José)
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2 h

An evening in “two movements”: the first, based on the Second Piano Concerto by Sergei Rachmaninoff, is a tale of looking for love in its romantic version; in the latter, the love story becomes denser, turning into a drama of jealousy and desire – it is the Carmen suite, after G. Bizet’s opera, written in 1967 by the contemporary Russian composer Rodion Shchedrin for his wife, Maya Plisetskaya, a prima ballerina at the Bolshoi Theatre. In his own version of Carmen, Ondrej Šoth, a celebrated Slovak choreographer, has confined the tale of pernicious desire to the characters of Carmen, José, Escamillo and Micaela. Their actions are catalyzed by Death, the fifth character of the drama. The stage set and the costumes have been prepared by Andrii Sukhanov, a dancer, choreographer and stage designer, director of the Ballet Company of the Slovak National Theatre in Bratislava. This is a co-production of the Krakow Opera and the Slovak National Theatre in Bratislava.

Requiem
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1 h 30 min

Requiem

Giuseppe Verdi
About

Written as a tribute to Alessandro Manzoni, a prominent Italian man of letters and patriot admired by Verdi, the Messa da Requiem was first performed one year after his death at the Milan Cathedral (1874) with a choir of 100 singers, an orchestra of 120 persons, La Scala singers as the soloists and the composer himself as the conductor. Sometimes compared to Mozart’s Requiem in terms of musical finesse, it is considered the highest achievement of the genre. A synthesis of the Italian operatic style and religious music, Verdi’s Requiem is a romantic work through and through, which is manifested by its diversity of form and extremity of contrast – from prayerful concentration to vehement sounds and dramatic expression. At the same time, the critics have pointed to its theatricality, consisting in strive for a “quasi-scenic display of its intensified musicality” (B. Pociej).

Tannhäuser
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4 h

Tannhäuser

Richard Wagner
About

Laco Adamik’s production moves away from the Romantic convention of staging the piece and brings it closer to our time.  It becomes a story not only about love and its varieties, but above all about a man torn between culture and nature, sensuality and spirituality, about the protagonist’s maturing on his way to finding himself, the essence of his humanity.

Tannhäuser is the first opera by Richard Wagner ever to be staged at the Krakow Opera.

 

TERESICA - UNA PASIÓN
next performance
22.11.2017, 6:30 pm
2 h 30 min

On the occasion of her birthday, Donna Anna coaxed her husband into letting her stage in the palace garden a theatre play titled ‘Teresica – The Compendium of Love’. Sensing a disaster, the countess’ husband unwillingly agrees to the undertaking. For a long time, Donna Anna’s behaviour has been hiding a love secret. So has the history of Teresica - a country girl being the protagonist of the staged tale...

The Bat
next performance
11.01.2018, 6:30 pm
3 h

The Bat

Johann Strauss
About

The translation of Die Fledermaus by the poet Julian Tuwim inspired the show’s director and choreographer, Janusz Józefowicz, to create a light-hearted, humorous yet spectacular performance. His rendition of the operetta is redolent with the atmosphere of the epoch: it is rich, meticulous and realistic. The costumes, made of silk, lace and velvet and decorated with ostrich plumes, take the audience a hundred years back. The orchestra plays lightly, in keeping with the atmosphere of the show. This Johann Strauss doesn’t sound his age.

The Devils of Loudun
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2 h 50 min

The Devils of Loudun

Krzysztof Penderecki
About

"The Devils of Loudun", Krzysztof Penderecki’s first work, was selected for the opening of the Krakow Opera’s new house. As Laco Adamik, the director, says, the work is based on an old-time story, but is not to be understood as a historical image or a reference to the past epoch, for it conveys a very modern message. The overlapping of two plains, the modern and the historical ones, is adequately conveyed by the costumes designed by Magdalena Tesławska. Andrzej Straszyński, the music director, has succeeded in highlighting the enormous expressivity of the work, especially when it comes to the orchestra and the chorus, creating thus a true musical drama. The chapter of the Jan Kiepura Music Award named the Krakow Opera’s production of "The Devils of Loudun" the best performance of 2008.

The Elixir of Love
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2 h 30 min

The Elixir of Love

Gaetano Donizetti
About

A jewel of the Italian opera buffa, as becomes a work of comedy it is all about love complications, this time in a rustic, bucolic setting. The characters’ amorous adventures come to a happy end not so much through their belief in the magic powers of the mysterious elixir as through their steadfast conviction that the world we live in is subject to an eternal order, which also comprises tolerance for the weaknesses and errors of human nature. Praised for the subtlety of the scenario and the psychological credibility of the characters, the work is also endowed with something elusive, evoking melancholy and yearning. Following this path, what the directors of the present stage production propose is a crazy sentimental journey to a bygone yet not-so-distant time, still remembered and reminisced upon, to convince us that goodness and love are invariably fascinating in every era and clime... This is the first staging of The Elixir of Love in the history of the Krakow Opera.

The Gypsy Baron
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2 h 30 min

The Gypsy Baron

Johann Strauss
About

Great splendour is a joke Sandor Barinkay, the son of the former Governor returns to his castle. His companion, the Royal Commissioner Carnero reinstates the family land ownership to Sandor. The new heir is welcomed by an old Gypsy Czipra, telling him that he would regain property and love. His neighbour Zsupan Kalman, a pig breeder who is unable to seize Barinkay's land, decides to make his daughter Arsena marry Sandor. The girl, however, is in love with Ottokar, the son of her Governess Mirabella. Zsupan invites all guests to his home. During the meeting, it is evealed that Mirabella is the wife of Commissioner Carnero who was lost during the Turkish war long before, and Ottokar was their son. At that time Arsena receives the new suitor with reservation, promising her hand when he earns the title of baron. Sandor is not discouraged, and, leaving for the capital, he visits a Gypsy camp on his land. There, he listens to a song by a young Gypsy Saffi...

The Haunted Manor
next performance
09.12.2017, 6:30 pm
2 h 50 min

The Haunted Manor

Stanisław Moniuszko
About

Director, Laco Adamik, aims at revealing Polish national vices and show that, regardless of the epoch, these vices remain the same. The prologue and the epilogue refer to the present day, thus giving the show a modern framework. Thanks to its well-woven, lively plot, which is fuelled by vows of bachelorhood, constantly surprises the audience with changes of mood and delights them with humour, wit and lyricism, The Haunted Manor remains one of the Polish music lovers’ all-time favourites. It comes as no surprise, given that, musically speaking, Moniuszko’s work is perfectly crafted: melodically and harmonically inventive and scored with immense virtuosity.

The Love for Three Oranges
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No dates available
2 h 10 min

When son of the King of Clubs is struck by melancholy, laughter seems to be the only remedy. Despite various courtly conspiracies and power games, the Prince  is freed from his malady and sets out on a quest to find love, entrapped magically in three oranges. Basing his opera on a fairytale by Carlo Gozzi, Prokofiev depicted the world of magic and witchcraft with considerable distance. He created a multilayer work, balancing between surrealistic farce, grotesque humour, and parody. Combining vivid action with a meticulously woven fabric of orchestral music, he showed extraordinary inventiveness and his own unique style. 

Michał Znaniecki places the action in a Moscow home for the elderly. As the television set breaks down, the doctors decide to perform the fairy story of 'The Love for Three Oranges'. Charmingly absurd, the tale turns into a metaphor-packed political satire.

The Marriage of Figaro
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3 h 20 min

The Marriage of Figaro

Wolfgang Amadeusz Mozart
About

Although it has been over two hundred years since the premiere of The Marriage of Figaro which took place on 1 May 1786 in Vienna’s Burgtheater, the opera's attractiveness has not faded away. It is the masterpiece of the opera theatre. The great libretto was written by Lorenzo da Ponte and based on a brilliant comedy by Pierre Beaumarchais which turned out to have prophetic inclinations over the coming French Revolution. The music was wonderfully light and sensuous. It mirrored the tensions of action, reflected the atmosphere and was full of humour. The libretto and the music make a unique whole. "The Marriage of Figaro" is an exciting comedy, full of unexpected turns of events. It is a story of erotic intrigue in which characters are perfectly portrayed. What is more, it was the first opera which included a critique of social relations. The creators of our performance have remained faithful to the Mozart’s masterpiece. They accentuate its timeless merits, including in particular the truthfulness of characters, emotions and relations between the characters. At the same time, they do not avoid social issues addressed in the story of marriage between Figaro and Susanna. The all-star cast of the premiere performance features Mariusz Kwiecień, the soloist of the Metropolitan Opera, as Count Almaviva.

The Nutcracker
next performance
15.12.2017, 5:30 pm
1 h 50 min

The Nutcracker

Piotr Czajkowski
About

One of the world’s most popular classical ballets is a story of a girl taken by her Christmas toy on a journey through a fairyland of wonders where anything is possible... The fairytale novella ‘The Nutcracker and the Mouse King’ was written in 1816 by the German poet and author E. T. A. Hoffmann. The ballet rendition of the story was conceived by the imagination of Marius Petipa, and Pyotr Tchaikovsky was commissioned to compose the music, following the success of The Sleeping Beauty. The premiere was held at St Petersburg’s Mariinsky Theatre in 1892.

The Tales of Hoffmann
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3 h 45 min

The Tales of Hoffmann

Jacques Offenbach
About

One of the most intriguing operatic pieces that allures with mystery and offers endless interpretations. The dream of producers and performers. But also a challenge. Authors of the staging reach to the fantastic stories by E. T. A. Hoffmann (1776-1822), which inspired Offenbach’s opera. By introducing us to the modern worlds of civilisation, real however looking ahead, they translate them into the contemporary language. Realism and fantasy, contemporaneity and a futuristic vision – this is the poetics of the staging. In terms of music, the performance presents a selected version of the opera which, after all, was not finished by the composer. Except for the best known "Barcarolle" and "Olympia’s Aria", we are going to hear plenty of other magnificent arias and terzettos, pastiche and parodies, which build up the musical world of the piece.

The Troubadour
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No dates available
3 h

The Troubadour

Giuseppe Verdi
About

A story of two brothers, separated by fate and then pitted against each other by their love for the same woman and by political turbulences – both unaware of their brotherhood... “Troubadour’s” libretto, despite based on authentic events from Middle Age Spain torn with civil wars, is regarded to be complicated and unclear, mainly because the key events for the plot take place out of stage – they exist only in relations of other characters. The opera’s success was attributed primarily to music – it is “a music and vocal pleasure”, they wrote. Laco Adamik – in defiance of these opinions – tries, relying on his many year’s narrative experience of a director, to make the performance shine also from the plot’s side. His staging offers fleshy characters, well-shaped events and a crime which once committed entails next ones, like in the ancient tragedy. You will be anxious and moved. It is the first staging of the title in the entire history of the Krakow stage.

The Turk in Italy
next performance
23.02.2018, 6:30 pm
3 h

The Turk in Italy

Gioacchino Rossini
About

During the Carnival season, Selim, the eponymous Turk, arrives in Italy in search of entertainment.  In the prevailing merriment and excitement it is no longer possible to tell who is crazy about whom: whether he about the beautiful women that he encounters or they about him, seeking exotic experiences. The constellations of love triangles and rectangles become ever more complicated through a series of misunderstandings, errors, and disguises – all immersed in the element of dance, as is becoming the period of humanity’s carefree craziness.

Tosca
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2 h 45 min

Tosca

Giacomo Puccini
About

"Tosca" is a part of the standard opera repertoire and has allowed many singers to create unforgettable characters. The opera features some of Puccini’s most splendid arias, Recondita armonia... and E lucevan le stelle..., interwoven with the story of a tragic love between the singer Tosca and the painter Cavaradossi, who fall prey to the police chief Scarpia’s machinations. As with every great work of worldwide fame, the producers are faced with the danger of rendering the opera too banal or too predictable, but the Krakow Opera’s staging of Tosca has a lot to recommend itself. Apart from an absolute vocal mastery, the lead singers show excellent acting skills – their characters are deeply moving and believable. The dramatic story of Tosca and Cavaradossi’s love as seen at the Krakow Opera House moves the audience to tears.

Two Stories – One Dance
next performance
No dates available
1 h 40 min

It is rare on our stage to have choreography inspired by jazz music. Even more rarely the ballet dances to the sounds of the bass guitar. This is the case of the present performance. If we add that the dancers are accompanied by the composers of the music: Piotr Orzechowski (the famous Pianohooligan) in the first part, and Krzysztof Ścierański (the best bass guitar in Poland) in the second part, we can expect and intriguing and unique event.

The choreography to the performance was created by Jacek Tyski, known from his productions for the Polish National Ballet, where he still performs as a soloist. He joined two musical stories by two composers though the dance on the same the theme, following the same scenario, the same “course of emotional events”. See for yourself what effect he has achieved – what can be achieved by the mutual inspiration of artists of the body and instrumentalists.

Winter Journey
next performance
No dates available
1 h 15 min

Winter Journey

Stanisław Barańczak, Franz Schubert
About

In 1827, Franz Schubert composed a series of twenty four songs entitled Winterreise (Winter Journey) to lyrical poems by the Romantic poet Wilhelm Müller. In 1994, Stanisław Barańczak completed his own Winter Journey, a collection of poems which are not translations of Müller’s works (with one exception) but original pieces, fitting perfectly the musical structure of Schubert’s masterpiece. Both these series are similar in spirit. As Barańczak points out, he owes the German poet “a lot of situational, thematic, and even phonetic inspirations.” The dissimilarities are the consequence of existing in two different worlds. Rejected in love, Müller’s romantic hero plunges into a wintery night of solitude and despair. Barańczak’s wanderer traverses the ice-cold desert of modern civilization with a heavy load of feelings and reflections provoked by it. It was this latter version, created by the Polish poet as a text set to Schubert’s music, that the directors of the production chose to work o

Witches
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No dates available