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Diodati. Unendlich (Diodati. Neverending)

Opera by Michael Wertmüller and Dea Loher
Uraufführung/Auftragswerk

Opera by Michael Wertmüller. Libretto by Dea Loher. In German. With German and English surtitles. Recommended for ages: 14 and over

A group of Britons with literary ambitions involved in a ménage á six travel to Switzerland in 1816 in search of «sublime» nature – they include Percy Shelley and his later wife Mary, Lord Byron and his personal physician John Polidori. However, the catastrophic weather of this legendary «year without a summer», the result of a volcanic eruption in Indonesia, forces the friends to wait for eight days in a villa on Lake Geneva. Here these cosmopolitan libertines – in no small measure under the influence of hallucinogens – tell each other made up stories about creatures controlled by others that reflect the depths of their own personalities – as well as their longing to actively shape their lives and to tackle social problems …

Starting with this historic meeting at which Mary Shelley’s «Frankenstein» was created – amongst other works – in their opera Swiss composer Michael Wertmüller and German playwright Dea Loher tell a story of the search for freedom and individuality in a world which seems to have lost its balance. The combination of Wertmüller’s high energy, explosive music – an intoxicating mixture of twelve tone music, blues and heavy metal – and Loher’s unfussy language that lends credibility to her frequently historical subjects and stories already created a sensation in their first collaboration, the chamber opera «Weine nicht, singe» (Don’t Cry – Sing) at Hamburg State Opera. «Diodati. Unendlich» is the first opera this established creative duo has written for the main stage.

The world premiere at Theater Basel will be directed by the American director Lydia Steier, whose Basel production of Stockhausen’s «Donnerstag aus ‹Licht›» was voted «Production of the Year». Returning to the pit following his considerable success as musical director of the productions «Donnerstag aus ‹Licht›» and «La traviata» is the Swiss conductor Titus Engel. The Echo Musik Prize-winning baritone Holger Frank («Oresteia») returns as a guest to Theater Basel in the role of Lord Byron.


The composer’s commission was accomplished with support from the Swiss cultural foundation Pro Helvetia and funded by the Ernst von Siemens Music Foundation

Preisstufe VI (von 30.– bis 102.–)

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