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Michel van der Aa: With my ear to the ground

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Michel van der Aa’s 1-minute opera With my ear to the ground about the rescued Chilean mineworkers received its premiere on the Dutch prime-time TV show De Wereld Draait Door in October 2010.

Composed, rehearsed, filmed and edited in just one day, the opera portrays the thoughts of a woman and her trapped husband, moments before they are reunited. The miner, played by the renowned Dutch actor Thom Hoffman, is the last to be rescued, and is seen on film tidying away the dominos that he has been playing for two months. At the same time his wife, sung live by mezzo-soprano Tania Kross, waits for him to surface.

The libretto was written by Nico Dijkshoorn and the instrumental part for positive organ was played by Jeroen Bal.


Met mijn oor op de grond. Of ik je hoorde.
Ik heb je lievelingseten gemaakt.
Zal je me kussen straks? Met de camera's erbij?

Ik moet naar boven.
Naar het licht toe.

With my ear to the ground. As if I could hear you.
I’ve made your favorite dish.
Will you kiss me later? With the cameras present?

I have to go up.
To where the light is.)

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