Composition Commission issued to David Philip Hefti
Genossenschft Konzert and Theater St. Gallen, Switzerland
Recipient of the Ernst von Siemens Music Foundation Composer’s Prize in 2013 Swiss composer David Philip Hefti is writing his first work for musical theater for Theater St. Gallen – entitled Annas Maske with a libretto by Swiss author and translator Alain Claude Sulzer. It is based on Sulzer’s novella of the same name published in 2001 which is in turn based upon a true event that played out in Stuttgart in 1910 and which made big waves. At that time Anna Sutter, the star of the Hoftheater – equally famed for her soubrette roles as for her Carmen – was shot in her home. Her killer then shot himself immediately after the murder. Anna Sutter – who once joked she would one day suffer Carmen’s fate – indeed became the victim of her former lover, the conductor Aloys Obrist.
The material offers an ideal opportunity to theatrically transpose strongly divergent “life plans” and perceptions: on the one hand, there is the easy-going, actually modern woman (and successful musician) who values her freedom more highly than she does a safe marriage. And, on the other, there is a man very much to be understood as an artist who possibly only develops and escalates his “amour fou” into madness when he realizes that he has already lost the woman he loves.
May 6, 2017 (premiere)
May/June 2017 (further performances)
Großes Haus, Theater St. Gallen, Switzerland