Tett på i foajeen
18.45: Pre-concert talk by Gunnar Danbolt

The character of Elektra, as imagined by Sophocles, is one of the most magnetic and fascinating in all fiction. Hell bent on vengeance after the death of her father, the Elektra of Sophocles’s drama grows increasingly deranged, her pathological desires and implacable temper putting her on a path to absolute destruction, axe in hand. In 1903, Richard Strauss saw Hugo von Hofmannsthal’s stage adaptation of the story in Berlin. He immediately knew he wanted to turn it into an opera.

The music that Strauss used to carry Hoffmannsthal’s specially re-adapted words has been compated to ‘the colour of blood.’ Elektra is Strauss’s most searing operatic score, a work that almost literally bursts with drama and action, assaulting the senses to utterly thrilling effect and asking everything of a writhing, spitting and soaring symphony orchestra.

Chief Conductor Edward Gardner conducts a cast lead by the great Swedish dramatic soprano Iréne Theorin, one of the finest Elektra’s of our time.

Elektra is performed with generous support from Trond Mohn and Grieg Foundation.

Photo above: Soprano Iréne Theorin sings the title role Elektra. Photo: Chris Gloag

Kirill Petrenko forced to withdraw from Elektra due to health issues
Due to unexpected serious health problems Kirill Petrenko, who arrived yesterday in Bergen, was forced to withdraw with his deepest regret only a few hours before the rehearsal start from the project to which he was looking forward so much since a long time and which was extremely important to him. He promised to come back to Bergen and the Bergen Philharmonic Orchestra as soon as possible for a new project.

We are very pleased that Chief Conductor Edward Gardner has accepted to replace Mr Petrenko as conductor for the two Elektra performances on 13 and 15 December.

Published 6 December 2023