Rusalka

NationaltheaterMunich, Bavaria, Germany
June 15 18:00, 18, 23, 25 17:00 (at 19:00 unless shown)
Performers
Bavarian State Opera
Andris NelsonsConductor
Martin KušejDirector
Martin ZehetgruberSet Designer
Heidi HacklCostume Designer
Kristine OpolaisSopranoRusalka
Dmytro PopovTenorPrince
Günther GroissböckBassVodník, the water goblin
Helena ZubanovichMezzo-sopranoJežibaba, the Witch
Nadia KrastevaMezzo-sopranoForeign Princess
Ulrich ReßTenorGamekeeper
Tara ErraughtMezzo-sopranoKitchen Boy
Sean Michael PlumbBaritoneThe Hunter
Evgeniya SotnikovaSopranoFirst Wood Sprite
Rachael WilsonMezzo-sopranoSecond Wood Sprite
Okka von der DamerauMezzo-sopranoThird Wood Sprite
Chor der Bayerischen Staatsoper
Bayerisches Staatsorchester

Rusalka feels trapped in a world from which there is no escape. She is ready to put her immortality on the line in return for a human soul, so she can gain the love of a handsome prince. But she must pay for it with her voice. Muted and liberated from her dark world, she is forced to watch as the prince rejects her in favor of a foreign princess – dooming them both. She cannot live, she cannot die, yet nevertheless at the end, she helps the prince find his death with a “rescuing” kiss. 

In their opera Rusalka, which premièred in 1901, Antonin Dvořák and his librettist Jaroslav Kvapil mixed the Slavic myth of the undead vengeful woman from the water with such storybook characters as Friedrich de la Motte Fouqué’s Undine and Hans Christian Andersen’s Little Mermaid. The fascinating musical worlds, the lyrical and highly dramatic moments came together to make Rusalka one of the most successful Czech operas ever written.

© Wilfried Hösl
© Wilfried Hösl
June 2017
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