During my residency at Civitella Ranieri I was working on a chamber music composition for musical theater, Tristans Tod (Tristan’s death). The project is a collaboration with the musicologist Olga Visentini, who also wrote the libretto. The play is about the death of the tenor Ludwig Schnorr von Carolsfeld, the first interpreter of Wagner’s opera Tristan und Isolde, with his wife Malwina as Isolde. He died a few days after the first premiere at a young age.
His agony is the deforming mirror reflecting the musical theater of Richard Wagner. Everything is inverted: Wagner’s gigantic orchestra is reduced to a few instruments; what happens in Wagner performance is perceived by the spectators only from the back door of the dressing room in which they see Schnorr dying; the triumphant character of Wagner’s heroes is transformed into the tragic and grotesque delirium of a human being.
The play will be premiered in Venice at palazzo Vendramin Calergi, Wagner’s last home.
Watch a video excerpt featuring a portion of the recent work Il Principe Granchio