Der Fliegende Holländer
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Following his acclaimed 2019 performances as Alberich in the Ring cycle, bass-baritone Tomasz Konieczny stars as the accursed Dutchman in Wagner’s eerie drama, alongside incandescent soprano Elza van den Heever as the woman determined to redeem his soul. Maestro Thomas Guggeis makes his company debut on the podium, with tenor Eric Cutler as Erik and bass Dmitry Belosselskiy as Daland in François Girard’s ghostly setting.
A co-production of the Metropolitan Opera; The Abu Dhabi Festival; and Opéra de Québec
Production a gift of Veronica Atkins
Languages sung in Der Fliegende Holländer
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Timeline for the show, Der Fliegende Holländer
Estimated Run Time
2 hrs 25 mins
Acts I, II, and III
World premiere: Court Opera, Dresden, 1843. Der Fliegende Holländer is the earliest of Wagner’s operatic creations to remain in the repertory. The two lead roles represent archetypes to which the composer would return, in one form or another, in most of his later works: the “otherworldly stranger” and the woman who sacrifices herself for his salvation. And as would be the case in many of Wagner’s later masterpieces, both the world of nature and of the supernatural are magnificently evoked in the score.
Richard Wagner (1813–83) was the controversial creator of music-drama masterpieces that stand at the center of today’s operatic repertory. An artistic revolutionary who reimagined every supposition about theater, Wagner insisted that words and music were equals in his works. This approach led to the idea of the Gesamtkunstwerk, or “total work of art,” combining music, poetry, architecture, painting, and other disciplines, a notion that has had an impact on creative fields far beyond opera.
The opera is set on the Norwegian coast. The time of the action is not specified in the score.
The score of Der Fliegende Holländer is an extraordinary combination of operatic lyricism, dramatic insight, and magnificent effects. At the time it was written, Wagner had not yet developed his theories of music-drama, which would form the basis for his later works. Many of the features of conventional opera (recitatives, arias, ensembles), therefore, can still be found, but the way Wagner integrates them into the fabric of the score clearly foreshadows his later technique of a continuous musical flow.