Saint François d’Assise (St. Francis of Assisi)

Saint François d’Assise (St. Francis of Assisi)

Oper Leipzig
Francis-scenes – opera in three acts and eight pictures

Sunday 15 Nov. // 04:00 – about 09:00 p.m.
Schauspielhaus / Große Bühne

    The town Assisi is located in Umbria near Perugia, about half ways between Florence and Rome. A visit there is a fundamental essential of all classical journeys to Italy and the town is shaped by the personality of the holy St. Francis (1182-1226) who lived and worked there. He founded the Franciscan order whose dicta demand penance, poverty and humility.

    »Saint François d’Assise« can rightfully be called the chef d’oeuvre and mighty keystone of Olivier Messiaen’s creations. It does not deals with an opera’s usual plot but with a series of scenes that show various aspects in the life of the holy St. Fran(cis). Sufferance, mastery of trepidation, encounter with an angel, sermon with a bird, stigmatisation (acquisition of the wound marks), death and renaissance are the stations along this road.

    Olivier Messiaen (1908-21) is one of the most significant French composers of the 20th century. After rehearsal performances in Paris (1983) and Salzburg (1992), his »Saint François d’Assise« will now be performed for the first time in Germany at the Oper Leipzig.

    »Messiaen’s music reminds us at the grand majesty that surrounds us, at the eternal miracle and on the fact that all of nature speaks to us. Messiaen’s opera should not be entertainment but something much more exciting and precious… In a world that is dominated by a all-devouring urge for material goods, Messiaen’s work should be understood as a challenge for knowledge and understanding« (Peter Sellars, Regisseur der Inszenierung in Salzburg, 1992, aus: Programmheft der Salzburger Festspiele anlässlich der Neuinszenierung, Sommer 1998).

    Chor der Oper Leipzig

    Gewandhausorchester Leipzig

    In französischer Sprache mit deutschen Übertiteln

    Uraufführung: 28.11.1983, Paris
    Premiere der Leipziger Inszenierung: 08.11.1998

    Produktion: Oper Leipzig

    Text und Musik: Olivier Messiaen

    Musikalische Leitung: Jiří Kout

    Inszenierung, Bühnenbild und Kostüme: Gottfried Pilz

    Lichtdesign: Manfred Voss

    Sänger: Ofelia Sala (der Engel), Frode Olsen (der Heilige Franz), Louis Gentile (der Leprakranke), Tom Erik Lie (Bruder Léon), Sang Ho Choi (Bruder Massée), Victor Sawaley/Jörg Schörner (Burder Elie), Soon Won Kang (Bruder Bernhard), Hidekazu Tsumaya (Bruder Sylvestre), Roland Schubert (Bruder Rufin)

    Archive 1998

    8th Festival Year