Photo: Sam Oberter

 

Opera Performance of Michael Hersch's "Poppaea"

Wien Modern, Austria


"Poppaea is an opera about a woman whose desire – for power, love, recognition, for her mother she lost at a young age, and for her own motherhood – is boundless; a woman whose intelligence matches her beauty, a woman who has to endure a great deal making her way in a world where women are systematically silenced. The violence that exists in this world is extreme. The question is: How far have we come? How little progress have we made?" (Michael Hersch and Stephanie Fleischmann)

Following Michael Hersch's chamber music trilogy sew me into a shroud of leaves, Wien Modern is now premiering his opera Poppaea. The subject matter of this production is extraordinary, both musically and artistically: with exciting dramatic differences to Monteverdi's genre-defining work, the historical material around Poppaea, Nero, Octavia and the people of Rome is transformed here into a haunting tale of the pursuit of power, love, affirmation, revenge, life and death. A gloomy, out-of-control scene full of abuse of power and contempt for humanity, full of violence and destruction, shows, in visually powerful images, a raging path into the abyss.

The immoderation of the almost 2000 year old model as a substrate to the current immoderation of today's power figures form a challenge for the premiere directed by Markus Bothe. In intense exchange with the composer and the librettist Stephanie Fleischmann, in dialogue with the performers, an extraordinary opera production is created.


Further Information:
wienmodern.at