Opera Scotland

Entführung aus dem Serail 1982Dresden State Opera

Read more about the opera Seraglio

When the Dresden company paid its first visit to the Festival, Ariadne, one of the group of Strauss works premiered in its own city, was a fairly obvious choice. Seraglio was perhaps less clear-cut, but it seems to have been a popular choice by visiting German companies over the years.

Harry Kupfer was without doubt one of the greatest of the East German school of directors (even if this was less interesting overall than his Elektra staging which Welsh National showed in Glasgow three years earlier).

The Festival's opera programme

The 1982 Edinburgh Festival had an Italian theme, though the opera programme did not follow this slavishly.  Scottish Opera at least performed  an opera by a composer generally ignored in the past - Puccini - and Manon Lescaut had not been seen in Scotland since Carl Rosa days, nearly thirty years before.

German opera companies had often visited Edinburgh.  However these were generally from the West - Hamburg, Munich, Stuttgart or Cologne.   Here,  less than a decade before the seemingly miraculous removal of the Wall,  we had a famous company from the East.   The Dresden State Opera was closely connected with Richard Strauss,  as the launchpad for most of his operas,   If Ariadne auf Naxos was actually premiered elsewhere,  it did at least fit the intimate King's Theatre well, and also linked to the Festival's Italian theme through its commedia element.   German companies also tended to bring a Mozart singspiel,  either Zauberflöte, or, as here, Entführung,

Welsh National Opera's contribution was Handel - the first Scottish performances of Tamerlano.  This tied in very neatly with a second Handel masterpiece,  Ariodante,  that ended the Festival in a lovely production by the Piccola Scala from Milan. They also brought a delightful early Rossini comedy, La pietra del paragone.

Performance Cast

Belmonte a Spanish aristocrat

Armin Ude (Aug 24, 29)

Günther Neumann (Aug 26)

Osmin the Pasha's overseer

Rolf Tomaszewski

Pedrillo Belmonte's servant

Uwe Peper

Konstanze a Spanish lady

Carolyn Smith-Meyer

Blonde Konstanze's English maid

Barbara Sternberger

Selim a Turkish Pasha

Werner Haseleu

Performance DatesEntführung aus dem Serail 1982

Map List

King's Theatre, Edinburgh | Edinburgh

24 Aug, 19.30 26 Aug, 19.30 29 Aug, 19.30

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