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Hans Thomalla

Dark Spring

Opera in 11 Scenes

Text by the composer after Frank Wedekinds "Frühlings Erwachen"

Song Lyrics by Joshua Clover

“a finger on the pulse of modern issues”

“an aching, sometimes disturbing work”

Musical America

“From the downbeat the mastery of orchestration that Thomalla wields is evident. The composition, execution, and performance are unparalleled.”

Music City Review

"This avowed song-opera goes like a bolted arrow directly into the listener’s heart"

The Whole Note

"The cast’s performances are sterling, and the subtly wrought score, given a committed performance by the 11-piece Nationaltheater-Orchester Mannheim under Alan Pierson, mixes American song, gently propulsive minimalism, electronics and avant-garde extended techniques to effect.”

BBC Music Magazin

"The stylistic nuances lend an immense musical flow to the songs."

Neue Zeitschrift für Musik

"With its four soloists and ten instrumentalists "Dark Spring" is the opera of the hour. But not just the reduced means but its Sujet mirrors the melancholy that keeps the world on tenterhooks - the distance to other humans." 

"Important New Piece of the 2020/21 Season".


"A harsh evening. That fascinates."

Mannheimer Morgen

"Thomalla's score is always on the move to the next sound world, to the next stylistic costume change; and yet the basic beat running through the 90-minute evening is an insistently lamenting, English spoken-singing ductus, which also allows for astonishing Puccini lyricism. Director Horáková Joly and video artist Sergio Verde succeed in creating strong, coherent visual worlds; the direction of the characters is tight and maintains a high level of internal tension despite the artificiality of the setting and the permanent distance. [...] All in all, a compact, aptly composed and confidently staged evening that is also musically convincing. And in its entire facon is it certainly the piece of the hour."

Deutsche Bühne

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