Wiener Festwochen 2021:
An opera premiere for Milo Rau!
Swiss director and author Milo Rau, one of the leading protagonists of activist theatre, is staging an opera for the first time. In Milo Rau’s production, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s La Clemenza di Tito (The Clemency of Titus) becomes not only a metaphor for a world divided in two, but also a model for a biting critique of society. Beyond the palace walls, post-national masses of displaced persons languish in a trailer-park ghetto. Meanwhile, an intellectual and artistic elite celebrates its own hollow actions as benevolence and forgiveness. A reworking of the material the likes of which Mozart’s popular opera has never experienced before!
Friday, 19 February, this exceptional production celebrated its premiere at the Grand Théâtre de Genève – sadly, in front of an empty auditorium due to the pandemic, but nonetheless as a live stream directly into your living room. At gtg.ch/digital.
Later in the year, at the end of May, you will have the opportunity to experience the Festwochen coproduction live at the Theater an der Wien. Conducted by Matthew Halls and featuring the Mozarteum Orchestra Salzburg, the Arnold Schoenberg Choir and a stellar cast, the performance here in Vienna promises to be one of the festival’s special highlights.
The festival and its artists
Obviously no-one yet knows what will be possible this spring; nonetheless, our firm intention is to diversify the festival activities within the city. Three Festwochen artists have therefore been invited to reflect a little more deeply on the relationship between festival and artists. Besides presenting their shows, this year’s Visiting Artists Azade Shahmiri, Gabriela Carneiro da Cunha and Alexander Zeldin will engage more widely with the city. Over a period of more than four weeks, they will elaborate new formats on site and share their knowledge and experiences with the audience. More information about these specific formats and other co-learning experiences during the 2021 Festwochen is to be communicated soon!