Death is never far away in Leo Janáček's work : in The Cunning Little Vixen, the main character falls under the fire of a hunter, Katia Kabanova kills herself, Emilia Marty in The Makropulos Case has to deal with the hard consequences of eternal youth. From the House of the Dead makes no exception, especially since the composer knew he was living out his final days when he decided to adapt into an opera Fyodor Dostoyevsky's eponymous novel, a literary work inspired by the time the novelist spent in a Siberian prison. This painful feeling of ineluctability pervades through his disillusioned and savage score, that recounts the hopeless life of the convicts of a Soviet concentration camp. In this place where life has already drawn out, in this no mans land forsaken by civilization, Janáček portrays the anonymous and daily sufferings, the abuses, the corporal punishments, but also evokes fragments from the prisoners' past, bringing them back to life for the duration of a game or of a story.
Peter Rose (Alexandr Petrovič Gorjančikov), Evgeniya Sotnikova (Aljeja), Aleš Briscein (Luka Kuzmič/Filka Morozov), Charles Workman (Skuratov), Bo Skovhus (Šiškov), Christian Rieger (Prison governor), Manuel Günther (Nikita, Big Prisoner), Tim Kuypers (Small Prisoner), Ulrich Reß (Old Prisoner), Boris Prýgl (Cook), Peter Lobert (Pope), Johannes Kammler (Čekunov), Kevin Conners (Šapkin), Alexander Milev (Blacksmith/A Prisoner), Matthew Grills (Kedril, Prisoner), Niamh O’Sullivan (A prostitute), Callum Thorpe (Don Juan, Brahmane), Dean Power (Čerevin), Galeano Salas (Drunk prisoner), Long Long (Guard)
Bayerisches Staatsorchester, Simone Young, Frank Castorf