Photo: Lioba Schöneck
Gärtnerplatztheater München, 1995, Director: Frank Arnold
Preußisches Märchen (1949)
Opera in five acts
Libretto by Heinz von Cramer (G)
2S,lyrS A,2lyrT,buffoT,Bar,lyrBar,3B,lyrB,buffoB; 4actors; dancer; chorus; 3(III=picc).2.2.2-220.127.116.11-timp.perc-harp-cel-strings; On-stage: 2(=picc).0.1.0-18.104.22.168-perc-pft.
This work is available from Boosey & Hawkes for the world.
Company: Städtische Oper
|FADENKREUTZ SENIOR, 70 years old||Soprano|
|His wife, about 65 years old||Buffo bass|
|Their children: WILHELM, 40 and AUGUSTE, 35||Lyric baritone, lyric soprano|
|BIRKHAHN, a civil servant, 30||Lyric tenor|
|MAYORESS, in her 40s||Alto|
|Their daughter ADELAIDE, late 20s||Soprano|
|Tax inspector ZITZEWITZ, 35||Buffo tenor|
|CAPTAIN OF THE FIRE BRIGADE||Lyric tenor|
|FOUR ACTORS||Speaking roles|
|Chorus: clerks, office messangers, guests at the ball|
|Ballet: soldiers, policemen, dancing costumes from the costume agency|
Time and Place
Berlin, ca. 1900
Wilhelm Fadenkreutz, a clerk in the city treasurer's office in Berlin, is awarded a medal by the Kaiser for exposing a case of embezzlement. Fadenkreutz not only feels like a new man, he feels altogether like a human being for the first time and makes sexual overtures to the mayor´s daughter, Adelaide, whereupon he is dismissed for being an "immoral person". When he gets home, he bursts in upon his sister, Auguste, and Birkhahn, a civil servant, who have just become engaged. To cover up the shame of Wilhelm's dismissal, Auguste presents him as an army captain out of uniform. Birkhahn invites everyone to a celebration of their engagement at the ball of the Concordia Fire Insurance Company, where a play he has written is to be performed. In order to appear as befitting his social station, Wilhelm borrows a uniform from a junk-shop and this effects an astounding transformation of his character. At the ball, Wilhelm turns public rejection of Birkhahn's complete flop of a play into acceptance through his wildly enthusiastic applause; much the worse for beer, he rails against liberalism in general and the mayor in particular and, at daybreak, he takes command of a patrolling troop of soldiers and marches against the town hall. That Prussia's 'glory' is saved in the end, is only thanks to the natural wit of the mayor´s wife.
History, Politics, Society, Literary
Deutsche Oper Berlin, 1974
Caspar Richter, cond. / Winfried Bauernfeind, dir.
Arthaus Musik DVD
Items on Sale
|Preußisches Märchen||Libretto||> Details|
|Preussisches Märchen (1949)||Piano Score||> Details|