A Note on Opera: Dvořák's "Rusalka" and Weber's "Der Freischütz": Opposing Views of Nature in German and Czech Opera

Apr 10, 2017 6:30 PM | Atlanta, GA

Notenblatt Enlarge image (© picture-alliance / Bildagentur-online / Klein) Join us for our latest lecture in our "A Note on Opera" series as we look at “Dvořák’s ‘Rusalka’ and Weber’s ‘Der Freischütz’: Opposing Views of Nature in German and Czech Opera.”

In breaking away from the Italian and French opera traditions, German opera went toward German folk and fairy tales rather than Greco-Roman antiquity. The role of Nature plays a dominant role in the German folk tradition and therefore in much of 19th-century German opera.

Czech opera separated itself from the German tradition by in turn focusing on Czech folk stories. While Nature plays a strong role in Czech folk stories as well, it is perceived very differently than in the German tradition. While in the German tradition, Nature often appears as threatening and dangerous, in the Czech tradition it is seen more often as a refuge.

Here are two separate opera traditions in the heart of Central Europe, often co-existing, literally, not only in the same cities but in the same theatres.

We will look at two supreme examples of these two often symbiotic opera traditions: Carl Maria von Weber’s “Der Freischütz” and Antonín Dvořák’s “Rusalka.”

Course to be taught in English by David Kerr. No pre-existing knowledge of music required.

Please use this link to register in advance for this course session.

Admission: $15 members, $25 non-members

Goethe-Zentrum Atlanta
1197 Peachtree Street NE
Colony Square, Plaza Level
Atlanta, GA 30361

A Note on Opera

Atlanta Skyline (c) picture-alliance/Chad Ehlers