“[…] Know that the lakes, seas and rivers are inhabited as well as the air; the ancient Wise Men have named Ondins or Nymphs this species of people. There are few males, and women are in great numbers; their beauty is extreme; and the daughters of men have nothing comparable… […]” Abbé de Villars, Entretiens sur les sciences occultes, 1670.
Libretto by Jaroslav Kvapil
Rusalka, a water nymph, has fallen in love with a prince and wishes to become human. The witch Ježibaba performs a spell that forces the water nymph to remain mute. Tired of her silence, the prince turns away from her and falls in love with a foreign princess. When the Prince tries to repent, Rusalka confesses the effects of the spell and drags him under the water.
The poet and playwright Jaroslav Kvapil was inspired by the German romantic story of La Motte-Fouque, the Ondine, which was very successful throughout Europe. The Little Mermaid, a famous fairy tale by Hans Christian Andersen, was the most famous illustration. Antonín Dvořak, the most famous Czech composer, was looking for a libretto for his new opera. Kvapil proposed Rusalka, which immediately seduced the composer. In the spring of 1901, the magnificent and moving work immediately met with triumphant success and today is one of the most performed Slavic operas.
A large part of the work was composed during the summer, in the countryside. Not far from his home, the composer often strolled around a lake that fascinated him. There he found, in imagining the undine and all the aquatic mythology, the inspiration and the atmosphere of his sublime drama.
If the famous “Chant a la Lune” has become one of the favorite arias of romantic lyric art, the entire opera is worth a visit, happily playing with a sublime orchestration and masterfully highlighting a vocalite particularly adapted to each character.
- FOR THE FIRST TIME AT THE ORW!
- NOUVELLE PRODUCTION
OPÉRA ROYAL DE WALLONIE-LIÈGE
- WITH THE SUPPORT OF TAX SHELTER OF THE FEDERAL BELGIAN GOVERNMENT AND BEL ARTS FUND
Set & Costume design
PRINC (LE PRINCE)
KNĚŽNA (LA PRINCESSE ÉTRANGÈRE)
JEŽIBABA (LA SORCIÈRE)
HAJNÝ (LE GARDE FORESTIER)
KUCHTÍK (LE GARÇON DE CUISINE)
PRVNÍ LESNÍ ŽÍNKA (PREMIÈRE NYMPHE)
DRUHÁ ŽÍNKA (DEUXIÈME NYMPHE)
TŘETÍ ŽÍNKA (TROISIÈME NYMPHE)
LOVEC (LE CHASSEUR)
Orchestre et Chœur
Opéra Royal de Wallonie-Liège