ⓘ Luci mie traditrici

                                     

ⓘ Luci mie traditrici

Luci mie traditrici is an opera in two acts by Salvatore Sciarrino, who also wrote the libretto. It was first performed under the German title Die todliche Blume on 19 May 1998 in the Schlosstheater Schwetzingen at the Schwetzingen Festival.

                                     

1. Composition history

Sciarrino started composing the opera in 1996. He based the libretto on the 1590 murder by the composer Carlo Gesualdo of his wife and her lover, but while working on it he discovered that Alfred Schnittke was also composing an opera Gesualdo on the same story. Deleting the references to Gesualdo, Sciarrino turned to a play, Il tradimento per lonore, by Giacinto Andrea Cicognini, and also used an elegy of Claude Le Jeune, based on a text by Pierre de Ronsard.

                                     

2. Synopsis

Place: The home of the Count and Countess Time: Late sixteenth century

Act 1

In the Prologue, a backstage voice sings Le Jeunes chanson. It is morning, and the Count and Countess declare their eternal love. The Servant announces the arrival of the Guest. After a short intermezzo, it is now mid-day. The Countess and the Guest make love. As darkness descends, the Guest leaves and the Countess is alone with the Servant.

Act 2

In the evening, the Count forgives the Countess. Later that night, the Countess opens the curtains of her bed, discovering the dead body of the Guest. The Count stabs the Countess and she collapses on the body of the Guest.

                                     

3. Performance history

Following the Schwetzingen premiere, the opera has been performed at the Theatre Royal de la Monnaie in Brussels and in New York with choreography by Trisha Brown 2001, as well as by the Ensemble Risognanze 2003 and at the Salzburg Festival 2008, the Berlin Festival of Contemporary Music 2010, a co-production between the Festival of Contemporary Art in Montepulciano 2010 and Oper Frankfurt 2011 as well as at the Staatsoper Berlin 2016.