Composition Commission issued to Toshio Hosokawa

Hamburg State Opera/Staatsoper Hamburg, Germany

The premiere of the opera “Stilles Meer” sees the musical philosophy of Japanese composer Toshio Hosokawa meet the theatrical reality of his compatriot Hirata Oriza. This defining figure of Japanese contemporary theater makes his debut in musical theater as a librettist and director.
Jointly they focus on subject matter that reflects on an artistic meta level the socio-psychological consequences of Japan’s catastrophic earthquake of 2011 and that explores the space between tones and silence in both a musical and scenic manner. The story is about Claudia who, seven years after the Fukushima reactor accident, can accept the death of her husband but not that of her son. In a typically stylized way the play combines drama, dance and music and tells of the separation of mother and child.
The music theater works of Hosokawa – who was sponsored in this project by the Ernst von Siemens Music Foundation – are famous for merging western musical history with traditional Japanese music culture. With his first opera “Visions of Lear” in 1998 he managed to bridge the gap between east and west at the Munich Biennale by adapting the Shakespearean material in the tradition of the Nô theater. After the premiere of his second work of musical theater “Hanjo” in 2004 at Festival d’Aix-en-Provence his third debut can be seen at Staatsoper Hamburg on January 24, 2016.

January 24/27/30, 2016
February 9/13, 2016
Main Stage, Staatsoper Hamburg

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