— At the Festival

Published on July 6 2019

FIVE GOOD REASONS YOU SHOULD RUSH TO GO SEE JAKOB LENZ

Jakob Lenz de Wolfgang Rihm - Mise en scène d'Andrea Breth - Festival d'Aix-en-Provence 2019
© Patrick Berger
Following its triumphant success in Berlin, Brussels and Stuttgart, Andrea Breth’s forceful production is arriving in France for three special performances. Here are five good reasons to rush to the Grand Théâtre de Provence on July 5, 8 and 12, at 8 p.m.

1— Georg Nigl, a true showman
The baritone Georg Nigl, a specialist in the contemporary repertoire, pushes his performance to new levels. He creates a Jakob Lenz who is bigger than life, and his vocal and stage presence will take your breath away. The artistic feat is mesmerizing.

2— Andrea Breth’s French premiere
Andrea Breth is a major figure in German theater. Her radical, psychological approach to the text and the skill with which she directs her actors have made her a highly sought-after and an award-winning artist. In over forty years of career, Jakob Lenz is her first production to be performed in France—an event not to be missed.

3— A triple-award-winning production
Acclaimed by operagoers and critics alike when it first premiered at the Stuttgart Opera House, it was named “Best Production of 2015” by the German magazine Opernwelt. Georg Nigl also won “Best Singer of the Year”; and Andrea Breth was awarded the Faust Prize, one of the highest honors in German theater.

4— A classic in contemporary music
In the forty years since it was created in 1979, Jakob Lenz has become a “classic” in contemporary music. Wolfgang Rihm was merely 26 years old when he composed the score, but the reception his opera received at the time—it was compared to Alban Berg’s Wozzeck—augured a successful career to come. Today, at 67, Wolfgang Rihm is a renowned composer with an extraordinary body of work.

5— The true story of a poète maudit
Jakob Lenz is the fascinating but true account of a poet who was consumed by his schizophrenia, renounced his art and became lost in a mystical delirium. His story, written by Georg Büchner in the nineteenth century and put to music by Wolfgang Rihm, goes beyond the man and his oeuvre: through his chaotic journey, insanity and tragic ending, Lenz embodies the very idea of the pre-romantic tragic hero.

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