Jenůfa
Greek National Opera
364 Syggrou street, Kallithea, 17674

Jenůfa

Opera

The Greek National Opera starts the season with the national premiere of one of the most important lyric works of the 20th century, Czech composer Leoš Janáček’s Jenůfa.

14 October, 2018 to 2 November, 2018
Info: 

Leoš Janáček

Jenůfa

Conductor: Lukas Karytinos
Director: Nicola Raab

PREMIERE 14 OCTOBER 2018
14, 19, 21, 24, 27 October 2018
2 November 2018

JANACEK CYCLE
2Oth CENTURY CYCLE

Greek National Opera - Stavros Niarchos Hall
Stavros Niarchos Foundation Cultural Center
Starts at: 20.00 (Sundays at 18.30)

Sets-costumes Giorgos Souglidis

With the GNO Orchestra, Chorus and Soloists

The Greek National Opera starts the season with the national premiere of one of the most important lyric works of the 20th century, Czech composer Leoš Janáček’s Jenůfa. It tells the grim story of an infanticide in the Moravian country during the 19th century: a stepmother kills the newborn baby of her stepdaughter thinking that this way she can help her be happy. It is a story of raw realism, served without sentimentality, in one of the first operas using unaltered literary prose. Janáček, inspired by the special musicality of the Czech language, employs its distinctive inflections to compose his first opera, in which he clearly articulates his personal idiom. The last 25 years this opera has been established in the greatest opera houses worldwide as one of the 20th century masterpieces. Jenůfa will be directed by German director Nicola Raab, one of the most important opera directors in Europe; she is internationally acclaimed for the special sensitivity of her readings and her insistence on the dreamlike visualization of the works she directs.

Raab, who has presented her work with great success in Vienna, Copenhagen, Bregenz, Göteborg, Lisbon, Los Angeles, Chicago etc, notes: “Jenůfa founded Janáček’s fame as operatic composer; after Jenůfa he was able to follow his trajectory in operatic composition, as he had not been able to do before. Fame came late in his life, Janáček was already 50 by the time of the premiere of Jenůfa in 1904. Based on a play by Gabriela Preissova, the plot of Jenůfa is marked by a strong social realism, a clear depiction of society and customs, that shape the characters and determine their behaviour. Three generations of women are present on-stage when the curtain opens: grandmother, (step)mother and (step)daugther; only one (half)son is to be found, drifting around on the edge of the action (Laca), and certainly no older men of the family. Later we meet another son, but he seems to be “away” eternally, partying, drinking, eschewing his responsibilities… the women have to take over, decide which way to go forward, which way to go at all. And they do, mainly in the shape of Kostelnicka, the middle one of the three, the mother figure. Her decisions will determine everybody else’s life, even literally so, everybody else’s life and death. As in seizing the responsibility, she will even become a murderess, inflicting old (patriarchal?) laws on herself and her family, to conform to the strict rules of society. As if the fathers, that we never meet, are forever controlling the lives of the women. Despite the harsh realities depicted, Janáček’s “magic”, spiritual side, as we can find it in his orchestral pieces and later operas, never seems to be far away, even if much less obvious than in the rest of his oeuvre. In this production we would like to combine both, realities of an existing rigid society with all their dark sides, together with happy memories of a time seemingly lost, and a spiritual sense of otherworldliness as embodied by nature and the universe.”

Venue: 
Greek National Opera Stavros Niarchos Hall / Stavros Niarchos Foundation Cultural Center
Hours: 
09.00-21.00
Special remarks: 
Parking
Credit cards are accepted
Wheelchair accessible
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