Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

AFRICA NEWS

Search of Air Algerie crash site continues

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

Sarkozy, Hollande and the scooter wars

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

Confusion online over Air Algérie flight

Read more

THE WORLD THIS WEEK

The World This Week - July 25th, 2014 (part 2)

Read more

THE WORLD THIS WEEK

The World This Week - July 25th, 2014

Read more

REPORTERS

Halal tourism on the rise

Read more

ENCORE!

Tunisia's Carthage International Festival turns 50

Read more

FRANCE IN FOCUS

WWI Centenary: the battle for Verdun

Read more

THE BUSINESS INTERVIEW

When big companies want to do good

Read more

  • Hamas opens fire on Israel despite offer to extend humanitarian truce

    Read more

  • Photos: Youths clash with police at banned Gaza protest in Paris

    Read more

  • Bodies of all Air Algérie crash victims to be brought to France

    Read more

  • Germany's Tony Martin wins 20th stage of Tour de France

    Read more

  • Kidnapped Briton freed after five months' detention in Yemen

    Read more

  • US evacuates embassy in Libya amid militia clashes

    Read more

  • Kerry in Paris for new round of Gaza ceasefire talks

    Read more

  • Nibali rides serenely toward a place in Tour history

    Read more

  • Video: 'Lack of security' at MH17 crash site, FRANCE 24 reports

    Read more

  • In pictures: Devastation, debris at Air Algérie crash site

    Read more

  • Washington Post reporter and his wife arrested in Iran

    Read more

  • French families grieve for Algerian plane crash victims

    Read more

  • Lithuania’s Navardauskas wins 19th stage of Tour de France

    Read more

  • LA Times wipes France off the map in air crash infographic

    Read more

  • Fans electrify the mood as Tour de France crosses the Pyrenees

    Read more

  • French lawyer files complaint against Israel at ICC

    Read more

  • Protest against Gaza offensive turns deadly in West Bank

    Read more

Europe

Nazi-themed Wagner opera cancelled after uproar

© AFP

Text by News Wires

Latest update : 2013-05-10

A German opera house has decided to stop showing a Nazi-themed production of a Wagner opera, because its scenes of murder and gas chambers profoundly shocked the audience when it premiered last Saturday, the company said on its website.

A Nazi-themed staging of a Wagner opera in Germany that caused some members of the audience to become sick with its scenes of murder and a gas chamber has been withdrawn, the opera company said on its website.

After failing to get the director to agree to changes, the Deutsche Oper am Rhein in Duesseldorf said that the production of “Tannhaeuser” would be given for the rest of its run in a concert version only.

German director Burkhard C. Kosminski’s interpretation of “Tannhaeuser” is set during the Holocaust and caused a scandal when it opened on Saturday, prompting some audience members to seek medical treatment, the opera house said in a posting this week on its website.

Management was aware before the premiere that the director’s modern take on the opera rooted in German legends would cause controversy, it said.

“We are, however, shocked that some scenes, especially the very realistic shooting scene, caused numerous guests such psychological and physical stress that they had to get medical treatment afterwards,” the Deutsche Oper am Rhein said.

“After considering all of the arguments, we have concluded that we cannot take responsibility for our artistic work having such an extreme effect so we cannot allow this production to continue being performed without any changes.”

The opera house said while it had discussed the possibility of changing some scenes with Kosminski, he had refused to allow this for artistic reasons. Deutsche Oper am Rhein said it accepted his artistic freedom for legal reasons.

Kosminski was not immediately available for comment when contacted by Reuters but he was quoted by German newspaper Westdeutsche Zeitung as saying he was “shocked” by the decision, adding that he had merely been informed of it by the opera house’s manager.

“Ten months ago I presented my concept and explained what I wanted to do. I ensured there was a lot of transparency during the rehearsals too. I am not a scandalous director,” he said.

In the bicentenary year of his birth, Wagner is still a controversial figure in Germany given his virulent anti-Semitism and the fact that he was Adolf Hitler’s favourite composer.

Last year, a Russian opera singer pulled out of the opera festival at Bayreuth, which was founded by Wagner, over tattoos on his chest, one of which resembled the Nazi swastika.

(REUTERS)

Date created : 2013-05-10

  • OPERA

    A blond and modern Carmen returns to Paris opera

    Read more

  • RUSSIA - CULTURE

    Russia's Bolshoi Theatre re-opens after six-year overhaul

    Read more

  • MUSIC

    La Scala names Barenboim as musical director

    Read more

COMMENT(S)