Puppet maker and director Nikolaus Habjan takes up another historically controversial topic. Following his Staatsoperette – Die Austrotragödie, premiered at Bregenz Festival in 2016, he now brings the conductor Karl Böhm on stage as a puppet. Born in Graz in 1894, Böhm is regarded as one of the most important conductors of the 20th century. For the sake of his career he came to terms with the National Socialists and in 1934 took over as Generalmusikdirektor at the Semperoper in Dresden after Fritz Busch had been forced out of the post. He conducted at Salzburg Festival virtually every year from 1938 onwards and was appointed director of Vienna State Opera in 1943. In 1935 – hence at a fairly early date in the Nazi regime – he wrote, “It will certainly suit the Government if I, a German conductor, go to Vienna to give new impetus to the many supporters of the National Socialist idea, all the more so as I am Austrian by birth. […] Heil Hitler!” Böhm was not a member of the NSDAP but did nevertheless occupy a leading position in the Militant League for German Culture. After the war ended the Allies banned him from performing for a period of two years. From 1954 to 1956 he once again served as director of Vienna State Opera.
He performed at Bregenz Festival on several occasions, conducting the Vienna Symphony Orchestra there as early as 1948. In 1980 he conducted Ludwig van Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony at the opening ceremony of the new Festspielhaus.
The author Paulus Hochgatterer has also appeared at Bregenz Festival previously. His play Makulatur was staged at the festival in 2012 and he has given readings of his works in the section Musik & Poesie.
A guest performance by Schauspielhaus Graz.
with Nikolaus Habjan
director Nikolaus Habjan
assistant director Martina Gredler
stage designer Julius Semmelmann
costume designer Cedric Mpaka
lighting designer Thomas Trummer
dramaturg Elisabeth Geyer
|1. Category: EUR 34
2. Category: EUR 28
3. Category: EUR 22