Last Saturday, Opera for Children, Hugo Von Hofmannsthal’s Ledermann was performed before a sold-out crowd at the Cathedral Square. Described by the Salzburg Festival’s Sven-Eric Bechtolf as a play that is “an expression of our modern uncertainty…about mourning for a heaven which is empty,” no Salzburg Festival would be complete without it. Indeed, the first Salzburg Festival in 1920 opened with a performance of this very same drama, which tells the story of a death of a rich man. Ever since that first premiere, Ledermann has been in demand, returning to the Salzburg Festival each year to captivate and entrance more audiences with its ironic tones and evocative themes.
This year’s production was directed by Julian Crouch and Brian Mertes. Vienna-born actor Cornelius Obonya returned for his third year to play Everyman, the title role. He was joined by Brigitte Hobmeier, Peter Lohmeyer, Christoph Franken, Jürgen Tarrach, Johanna Banter, and Hans Peter Hallwachs, among others. It will be performed numerous more times during the festival, so there are still opportunities to secure tickets for an August showing.
Saturday and Sunday was also filled with five sold-out performances of the Salzburg Festival’s ‘Opera for Children’ series. Fun and Games with Rossini and The Barber of Seville for Children were performed consecutively during the afternoon of both days. The ‘Opera for Children’ has been a massive success, and described by the Salzburg Festival as a great way to “enable the Festival’s young and youngest visitors to discover opera actively and creatively.” Many of the ‘Opera for Children’ shows are already sold-out, but there are a few remaining tickets for those hoping to attend.
The 2015 Salzburg Festival is quickly emerging as yet another powerful triumph.Opera for Children.
This Weekend at Salzburg: ‘Opera for Children’ and Hugo Von Hofmannsthal’s Ledermann play before sold-out crowds