Press release

Premiere of »Die Gespenstersonate«

Weißer Porzellankopf auf schwarzem Grund

Dresden, 30 January 2023. An outlandish group of the living and the undead gathers for a »ghostly dinner« in a well-appointed house. Soon the strange guests find themselves entangled in a web of hidden secrets, dark desires and unfulfilled dreams. From Friday, 17 February 2023, Aribert Reimann’s chamber opera »Die Gespenstersonate« (The Ghost Sonata) will transport Semperoper audiences into the murky depths of a soulless world of illusion, staged for our Semper Zwei venue by director Corinna Tetzel.

Almost eighty years after the Stockholm premiere of August Strindberg’s chamber play of the same name, Aribert Reimann composed »Die Gespenstersonate« in the years 1982/83 for the Berliner Festspiele. The multi award-winning composer managed to create here another major example of modern music theatre, which he intended to be understood as »a piece of chamber music with song«. Reimann wrote the libretto in collaboration with Uwe Schendel, basing their text on Schendel’s translation of the original Swedish play. With musical ingenuity and a striking tonal language, the result is a densely atmospheric masterpiece that brilliantly reflects the literary model and fascinates the listener with its complex interweaving of score and libretto.

Premiered in Berlin in 1984, Dresden audiences now have the opportunity to enjoy this work. The Semperoper is thrilled to have been able to engage Corinna Tetzel to direct the production. In the 2016/17 season she already proved her keen understanding of contemporary opera at the rehearsals for the Frankfurt production of »Die Passagierin«. The Dresden premiere also marks the Semperoper debut of South Korean conductor Yura Yang, who will interpret this musical kaleidoscope in Semper Zwei with a fantastic cast featuring Andrew Nolen and Michael Pflumm in the lead roles.

»Die Gespenstersonate« by Aribert Reimann
Staged by Corinna Tetzel 
With Sarah Alexandra Hudarew, Justyna Ołów, Jennifer Riedel, Eva Maria Summerer as well as Matthias Henneberg, Jürgen Müller, Philipp Nicklaus, Andrew Nolen and Michael Pflumm.
The project orchestra will be conducted by Yura Yang.

Dresden Premiere at 7 pm on Friday, 17 February 2023, in Semper Zwei.
Additional performances in February and April 2023 are indicated in the Semperoper programme.

Tickets for all performances available online or from the Schinkelwache box office on Theaterplatz (T +49 (0)351 4911 705).

Requests for review tickets (stating the editorial brief and likely publication dates) should be sent to:

High-quality photos, audio samples and the programme booklet can be downloaded for publicity purposes from our password-protected press area. 


Photo: Premiere motif of »Die Gespenstersonate« © Rosemarie Trockel, Courtesy Sprüth Magers, VG Bild-Kunst Bonn 2022
The motif is part of the artistic concept for the premiere posters 2022/23 with a series of works by Rosemarie Trockel.