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Music Text

Libretto by Wolfdietrich Schnurre (G)

Scoring

A,buffoT,lyrBar;
1.picc.1.1.1-1.1.1.0-timp.perc-pft-trautonium(on tape)-strings

Abbreviations (PDF)

World Premiere
10/3/1958
Berlin
Company: Unknown

Roles

THE ELDERLY LADY Contralto
ANAXIMANDER, her tomcat Lyric Baritone
THE CHIMNEY-SWEEP Buffo Tenor
Time and Place

In an attic. Some time

Synopsis



An elderly lady is fond of her tomcat Anaximander. Anaximander is a pleasure-hunting, if narrow-minded, specimen of his species (similarities with another living species are no accident) whose hobby it is to court young and beautiful lady cats on the tin roofs in the surrounding neighbourhood. Of course Anaximander returns to his elderly lady when he feels hungry. The lady gets a rival. A chimney-sweep feels affection for Anaximander. The chimney-sweep is black, has got wings and makes the elderly lady afraid. When she therefore does not want to allow her elegant tomcat to go on the roofs any more, Anaximander threatens to leave her forever. The elderly lady kills her beloved tomcat with the needle she had just been using to sew his resting cushion. The chimney-sweep comes brandishing a pistol and takes Anaximander's corpse away from her.

Moods

Comic, Dramatic, Poetic

Subjects

Relationships, Society




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