Opera Scotland

Šárka

Music

Leoš Janáček (born Hukvaldy, 3 July 1854; died Ostrava, 12 August 1928)

Text

Julius Zeyer.

Source

Bohemian chronicle by Dalimil (14th century).

 

Premières

First performance: Brno (National Theatre), 11 November 1925.

First UK performance: Edinburgh (Usher Hall), 24 August 1993 (concert).

First performance in Scotland: As above.

Scottish Opera première: N/A.

 

Background

This was Janáček's first operatic composition, commenced in 1887. He worked on it at long intervals between other work, revising it in 1919 and again before its first performance. It was not performed until he had established himself on the international scene in old age, and had some orchestration by one of his pupils. It is far from being a masterpiece, with a broken-backed libretto on the subject of medieval warrior maidens. But it is very short, and has some effective moments, though they sound more like Dvořák than his mature works. But it must be said that Fibich's more conventional treatment of this ancient Czech legend is a more satisfactory piece overall.

 

Characters

Šárka (soprano)

Ctirad, a knight (tenor)

Lumír (tenor)

Přemysl, a prince (bass)

The Cast

Ctirad
 a knight
Lumír
 
Přemysl
 a prince
Šárka
 

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