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A cosmic saga

21 & 22 May 2019 - 6.30pm

Southbank Centre's Royal Festival Hall, London

© Matthieu Fappani / Opéra Comique

For the first time since 1985, Stockhausen’s monumental opera Donnerstag aus Licht (Thursday from Light) returns to the UK. Maxime Pascal conducts the combined forces of Le Balcon, the London Sinfonietta, the New London Chamber Choir and students from the Royal Academy of Music, in a new production directed by Benjamin Lazar. A great avant-garde innovator, Stockhausen only turned to opera aged 50. He spent 26 years developing his seven-part epic, the Licht cycle, which explored the story of mankind as a cosmic saga, and linked each opera to a day of the week, a celestial body and a colour. Donnerstag (Thursday, Jupiter, bright blue) is the fourth opera in the cycle and follows the story of Michael, an angel in human form, as he relives the composer’s childhood, learns music, grows up, falls in love, travels around the world and overcomes forces of evil.

Greeting and Farewell from Donnerstag aus Licht will be performed in The Clore Ballroom in the foyer of the Royal Festival Hall with members of the Music Manson Ensemble before and after the opera, as intended by the composer, conducted by London Sinfonietta Principal Clarinet Mark van de Wiel.

Karlheinz Stockhausen Donnerstag aus Licht (Thursday from Light)

Le Balcon
London Sinfonietta
Royal Academy of Music Manson Ensemble
Maxime Pascal conductor
Mark van de Wiel conductor (Greeting)
Henri Deléger Michael, trumpet
Damien Bigourdan Michael, tenor
Emmanuelle Grach Michael, dancer
Iris Zerdoud Eve, basset horn
Léa Trommenschlager Eve, soprano
Elise Chauvin Eve, soprano
Suzanne Meyer Eve, dancer
Mathieu Adam Lucifer, trombone
Damien Pass Lucifer, bass
Jamil Attar Lucifer, dancer
Victor Virnot Lucifer, dancer
Alphonse Cemin piano
Alice Caubit clarinet
Ghislain Roffat basset horn, clarinet
New London Chamber Choir
Florent Derex sound projection 
Augustin Muller computer music
Yann Chapotel video design 
Christophe Nailler lighting design



Please note that booking takes place on external sites.
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  • 21 & 22 May 2019

    £15, £25, £30, £55, £70 (plus booking fee)

    Venue: (view map)

    Royal Festival Hall, Southbank Centre

    Box Office No:
    0207 960 4200