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Philip Glass

Publisher: Chester Music

In the Penal Colony (2000)
commissioned by A Contemporary Theatre (ACT) in Seattle, Washington
Work Notes
Libretto (English) by Rudolph Wurlitzer based on the original stroy by Franz Kafka
Text Writer
Rudolph Wurlitzer
Publisher
Dunvagen Music Publishers Inc
Category
Opera and Music Theatre
Sub Category
Chamber Opera
Year Composed
2000
Duration
1 Hours 20 Minutes
Language
English
Soloist
Tenor, Baritone, 2 Actors
Orchestration
Alternate Orchestration
vln(1&2).vla.vc.db
Programme Note
Philip Glass In the Penal Colony (2000)
CAST
Commander of the colony - baritone, alt. bass
Visitor - tenor
Prisoner - speaking
Guard - speaking

SYNOPSIS
Kafka is one of the seminal minds of modernists writing and has proven to be a steadily appealing author for modern audiences. "In the Penal Colony," which was commissioned by A Contemporary Theatre in Seattle and premiered September 31, 2000 is based on Kafka’s short story of the same title. The story describes an execution planned for one of the prisoners of the "colony" for which and up until then, an execution machine has been routinely used. The material itself is allegorical, and though at first the story appears to address the question of capital punishment, in fact Kafka uses it as a platform to explore, extensively and poetically, issues of humanism, idealism, and transfiguration. The two protagonists - the commander of the colony and the visitor – are written for a baritone and a tenor or bass and tenor respectively. In addition, there are 2 speaking roles- a prisoner and a guard. A string ensemble accompanies the performers.

  • Ensemble
    Music Theatre Wales Ensemble
    Soloist(s)
    Michael Bennett ten., Omar Ebrahim bar..
    Conductor
    Michael Rafferty
    Orange Mountain Music:
Performances
Date
Title
  • 16 JUN 2014
    Arts Theatre, London
    Shadwell Opera
    Jack Furness, conductor

    Other Dates:
    30 June - Arts Theatre, London
  • 07 SEP 2012
    Tallahassee, FL
    Florida State University
  • 30 JUN 2012
    Pilsen, Czech Republic
    Josef Kajetan Tyl Theatre

    Other Dates:
    30 September - Pilsen, Czech Republic
    10 October - Szeged, Hungary
    15 September - Szegad, Hungary
  • 07 APR 2012
    Parade Playhouse Theatre Kensington Sydney, AUSTRALIA
    Sydney Chamber Opera
    Huw Belling, conductor

    Other Dates:
    8,12-14 April - Parade Playhouse Theatre Kensington Sydney, AUSTRALIA
  • 07 APR 2012
    Parade Playhouse Theatre, Kensington, Sydney, AUSTRALIA
    Sydney Chamber Opera
    Huw Belling, conductor

    Other Dates:
    8,12-14 April - Parade Playhouse Theatre, Kensington, Sydney, AUSTRALIA
  • 01 OCT 2011
    Brooklyn Heights, NY
    String Orchestra of Brooklyn
    Eli Spindel, conductor
  • 20 MAY 2011
    Hochschule der Kuenste, Zurich
    Hochschule der Kuenste, Zurich
    Michael Benett, Herbert Perry; Andrea Mollino, conductor

    Other Dates:
    21,22 May - Hochschule der Kuenste, Zurich
  • 16 SEP 2010
    Linbury Studio Theatre, Linburg, UK
    Music Theatre Wales

    Other Dates:
    17,18 September - Linbury Studio Theatre, Linburg, UK
    29 September - Oxford New Theatre, UK
    17 November - RNMC, Manchester, UK
    14 November - Clwyd Theatr Cymru Mold, Wales
    10 November - Riverfront Theatre, Newport, Wales
    16 November - Glasgow, Scotland
  • 18 NOV 2009
    Festival Automne en Normandie
    Théâtre des Arts, Rouen, France
    Opéra de Lyon / Compagnie Anonyme
  • 13 OCT 2009
    Italy
    Quartetto Fone
  • 23 JAN 2009
    Lyon, France
    Opera National de Lyon

    Other Dates:
    29,31 January; 2,4 February - Lyon, France
  • 14 MAR 2008
    Tokyo, Japan

    Other Dates:
    15,16 March - Tokyo, Japan
  • 09 MAR 2007
    Teatro Municipal da Guarda, Portugal
    Quarteto Sao Roque
    Américo Rodrigues, director
  • 18 DEC 2006
    Dresden, Germany
    Staatskapelle Dresden
    Brett Alan Austad, conductor
  • 05 OCT 2006
    Staatsoper, Dresden, Germany
    Staatsoper Dresden

    Other Dates:
    6 October - Staatsoper, Dresden, Germany
  • 29 MAY 2006
    Czech Republic
    Agon Orchestra

    Other Dates:
    30 May - Czech Republic
  • 11 MAR 2006
    Alexander Theatre, Helsinki, Finland
    Opera Skaala

    Other Dates:
    13-16,18 March - Alexander Theatre, Helsinki, Finland
    17 March - Alexander Theatre, Helskinki, Finland
  • 12 DEC 2005
    Archa Theatre, Prague
    Agon Orchestra
  • 26 FEB 2005
    Magdeburg Theatre, Germany
  • 22 NOV 2002
    Berlin, Germany
    Berliner Kammeroper
    Kay Kuntze, conductor

    Other Dates:
    23-27 November - Berlin, Germany
  • 26 SEP 2002
    Nuremburg, Germany
    Andrea Molino, musical director / Peter Beat Wursch, stage director

    Other Dates:
    27 September; 7 November - Nuremburg, Germany
  • 11 APR 2002
    Turin, Italy
    Teatro Regio
    Carlo Boccadoro, conductor

    Other Dates:
    12 April - Turin, Italy
  • 01 JUL 2001
    Chicago, Illinois
    Classic Stage Company
    Joanne Akalaitas, stage director

    Other Dates:
    2-14 July - Chicago, Illinois
  • 14 JUN 2001
    Chicago, Illinois
    Classic Stage Company
    Joanne Akalaitas, stage director

    Other Dates:
    15-30 June - Chicago, Illinois
  • 14 JUN 2001
    New York
    Classic Stage Company

Reviews
...the sense of strangeness and the bizarre is very attractive.
Ivan Hewett, Telegraph,9/13/2010
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