Transforming Bach’s Cantatas into an opera

Theatre director Herbert Wernicke has taken six of Bach’s Cantatas dealing with the frailty of the human condition and presented them in a staging of mundane human activities.  Albrecht Puhlmann, the general director of Stuttgart Opera, states that “From the woman with the baby to the coffin being carried out, life and death is being enacted on the stage; but it is the music that elevates the people and their actions. Everyday gestures become extraordinary through Bach’s music.”

Rowena Smith, “Herbert Wernicke’s Actus Tragicus: Bach as kitchen sink drama”, The Guardian, 20 August 2009.

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By Greg

Australian composer and pianist