Opera Scotland

Emperor of Atlantis 2018Royal Conservatoire of Scotland

Read more about the opera Emperor of Atlantis

Viktor Ullmann was just one of the composers to be murdered by the Nazis and whose music disappeared for many years. His challenging allegorical satire The Emperor of Atlantis was actually composed in the dreadful circumstances of the Terezin internment camp (Theresienstadt), where any performance was banned. The score miraculously survived, and has only been available for the past thirty years or so, in a version edited by Henning Brauel. While the work may not quite be a masterpiece, this interesting and worthwhile production that constituted its Scottish premiere was well worth seeing.

The performance was crisply conducted by the veteran Lionel Friend, in what seems to be his operatic debut in Scotland. The staging - apparently backstage in a derelict theatre - worked quite well. Jerome Knox dominated proceedings as an appropriately sardonic Death figure, debating with Harlequin (a high-lying tenor part), though the latter does seem to fade out of the action early on, as does the initially important Loudspeaker. The militaristic characters - Emperor, Drummer, Soldier, Girl - all make their mark effectively.

The evening began with Holst's brief but moving chamber piece Savitri, from an earlier wartime era (1916), in which Death is outwitted and forced to restore Savitri's husband to life.

Performance DatesEmperor of Atlantis 2018

Map List

New Athenaeum Theatre | Glasgow

20 Jan, 19.15 22 Jan, 19.15 26 Jan, 19.15 27 Jan, 19.15

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