Komponist – Pianist


 Nikolaus Schapfl

 musik@nikolausschapfl.com

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   Opera The Little Prince    
mp3 anhören Based on Antoine de Saint-Exupéry´s book

Authorized by Editions Gallimard, Paris and by société pour l´œuvre et la
mémoire d´Antoine de Saint-Exupéry


First authorized version for music theatre
Libretto & Music by Nikolaus Schapfl
Oper Der Kleine Prinznach Antoine de Saint-Exupéry  
         
Publisher of the Opera The Little Prince: Sikorski - Hamburg  
Article in the publisher´s journal of Feb. 2006 - read  
         
"The music is melodious, varied and contains wonderful arias and duets and coloristic effects...The orchestra suite met with great success. - After
having considered some 70 different musical treatments of the book, the
publisher Gallimard authorized this operatic version because the
Saint-Exupéry family was enthusiastic about the very inspired music."
(Regine Koch, Bavarian Theater Academy, The Prinzregenten Theater, Munich)
 
           
  Nikolaus Schapfl... „His composing is skillful, technically demanding, yet very accessible to the modern day audience with beautiful melodies, rhythmic energy and exciting and colorful orchestration.“
(Dr. James Stuart, Ohio Light Opera, USA)
   
             
  “... a very rich orchestration and instrumentation, and an outstanding piano part." (Prof. August Everding)  
           
  „Very good... Antoine would be happy."
(André de Fonscolombe, the poet´s cousin, about the music).
 
           
  Performances of the Orchestra Suite by now:
Première in Shanghai by the Shanghai Symphony Orchestra in May 1997;
Romanion State Philharmony Brasov 1997-2002;
Filharmonia Opolska 1998; Junge Philharmonie Salzburg 1999;
 
           
  Première of the opera:
July 24th, 2003, 20:00 Uhr, Great Hall of the Mozarteum Salzburg
Junge Philharmonie Salzburg under the direction of Elisabeth Fuchs.
 
             
  Further performances of the opera:    
  February 29th, 2004, Munich Philharmony Gasteig Bayern 4 Klassik  
  September 15th, 2004, Philharmony Cologne, 8.00 pm    
  November 16th, 2004, Beethovenhalle Bonn, 8.00 pm    
  January 22nd, 2005, Forum Leverkusen, 8.00 pm    
  January 26th, 2005, Frankfurt/Main Alte Oper, 7.30 pm    
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  Tournée Stuttgarter Philharmoniker 2007
Stuttgarter Liederhalle - February 2nd, 2007
Münchner Philharmonie - February 24th, 2007
     
  Scenic Premiere at the Badisches Staatstheater Karlsruhe Text by the publisher Sikorski
  director, stage and costume designer : Peer Boysen  
   
  Photos of the scenic premiere at the State Theatre Karlsruhe 2006    
     
  date of the scenic premiere : March 25th, 2006  
  further performances:  
     
  Wednesday, March 29th, 2006, 8 pm
Friday, April 7th, 2006, 8 pm
Sunday, April 16th, 2006, 7 pm
Sunday, June 4th, 2006, 3 pm
Thursday, July 6th, 2006, 8pm
 
     
  further performances in the season 2006 / 2007 announced by the theatre:
     
  Sunday, September 24th, 2006, 19:00
Friday, October 06th, 2006, 20:00
Thursday, October 12th, 2006, 20:00
Sunday, November 05th, 2006, 15:00
Tuesday, December 19th, 2006, 20:00
Thursday, January 11th, 2007, 20:00
Sunday, January 28th, 2007, 19:00
Information without guarantee
     
  List of all performances 2003-2015  
     
             
  Printings/Posters of performances      
    Salzburg Placard July 24th, 2003    
      Munich Placard BR-Feb 29th, 2004    
      Munich Postcard 2004    
      Cologne Placard Sept 15th, 2004    
     
Festspielbühne Pernerinsel, Salzburg, autum 2019
   
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  film impressions      
         
  film impressions about the performance in the Philharmony of Cologne,
September 15th, 2004. The composer introduces some of the musical themes at the piano.
   
      see the film    
             
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  A History in Brief      
             
April 1995    Initial meeting with Dr. August Everding, General Director of Bavarian State Theaters, at Munich’s Prinzregenten Theater. Presented the project, musical extracts and scenic outlines.  
           
September 1995    Sketched out the initial concept of the Libretto; completed an initial treatment by the end of 1996.  
           
April 1997    World premiere of the orchestra suite “The Little Prince" by the Shanghai Symphony Orchestra in Shanghai (supported by the Deutscher Musikrat, Bonn). The piece was subsequently played by the Brasov Philharmonic (Nov. 1997), the Philharmonia Opolska (Jan. 1998), the Salzburg Youth Philharmonic (April 1999), and broadcast by numerous international radio stations.  
        to enlarge click on picture  
Herbst 1997    Contacted the heirs of Antoine de Saint-Exupery; after hear the music, they wrote (Jan. 1998): "The music captivated us."    
             
27. August 1998    Concert performance of the opera with piano and singers in the presence of members of the Saint-Exupéry family and a representative of Editions Gallimard, Paris. (the title role was sung by: Andreas Seebacher, Salzburger Chorknaben).  
           
28. August 1998    Heirs and publisher authorize the musical treatment. The Prinzregenten Theater plans to stage world premier in November 2000 under the direction of Dr. August Everding.  
           
1998-2000    Composition of abbreviated version (lasting 2 hours -- 2 acts running 1 hour each), revision in cooperation with the Bavarian Theater Academy. Dr. Everding was unable to realize his intention of holding the world premiere at the Prinzregenten Theater, and touring Germany's leading opera houses before passing away in 1999.  
        to enlarge click on picture  
14. Januar 2001    Private performances with piano and singers on the Côte d'Azur, at the Château d'Agay near Cannes, France; August 30, 2001 performance at Schloss Blühnbach near Salzburg; Pilot/Fox: Bernhard Berchtold (Tenor); Snake/Rose: Monika Wäckerle (Mezzosoprano); The Little Prince: Yvonne Moules; King/Geographer: Christoph Stephinger    
             
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  Synopsis        
             
Ouvertüre               
1st Act               
1st Scene    The Pilot regains consciousness and encounters the Little Prince, who
asks him to draw a sheep.
   
2st Scene    The Little Prince tells the pilot about the dangerous baobab
plants on his planet.
   
3st Scene    Sunset    
4st Scene    The Pilot works at repairing the engine of his airplane while
the Little Prince asks him about flowers, thorns and other things. Aria: “If somebody loves a flower who lives alone on a star..."
   
5st Scene    The Little Prince experiences the blooming of the rose on his planet. Because of the flower's difficult personality, the Little Prince feels obliged to set off on a journey.    
6st Scene    The King    
7st Scene    The Vain Man    
8st Scene    The Drinker    
9st Scene    The Businessman    
10st Scene    The Lamplighter    
11st Scene    The Geographer - followed by the scene of the Little Prince's journey to earth in the company of a flock of birds.    
       
  -Pause-    
       
2nd Act         
12st Scene    The Snake    
13st Scene    The Little Prince climbs a high mountain and converses with the Echo.    
14st Scene    The Little Prince encounters the Roses and the Fox who entrusts to
him his secret: “One only sees good with the heart."
   
15st Scene    The well in the desert.    
16st Scene    Finale    
     
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  Interview
Anthony Salvia, freelance journalist, New York
   
             
  How did it happen that the heirs Saint-Exupéry granted you permission for setting to music this world-famous book?    
  I sent recordings of my opera to the family and received a letter saying that the music had charmed them.    
             
  Why did you take up this subject?    
  I read the book as a child and it fascinated me. Later I realized that this story is ideally appropriate for musical/dramatic treatment because of its strongly contrasting characters and situations.    
             
  Could you tell us about how people have reacted to the music?    
  I remember the performance at the Côte d´Azur for the Saint Exupery family in 2001. I noticed that not a few people in the audience were in tears, which pleased me because it meant I had achieved something as a musician.    
             
  What was it like working on the opera?    
  An adventure... fascinating and not easy. There were high expectations on all sides. Shortly after I started working on the opera, I received a request for an orchestra suite which was performed in 4 countries on 2 continents. August Everding himself gave his blessing to the libretto. Where the dramatic treatment was concerned, I benefited a great deal by working with him. I also owe a lot to family of Saint-Exupéry who gave me much encouragement. They called my attention to many details, such as the character of the Fox and his secret.    
             
  How did you meet Elisabeth Fuchs and the Salzburg Youth Philharmonic?    
  Elisabeth Fuchs and the Salzburg Youth Philharmonic performed the orchestra suite on April 29, 1998. I was impressed by the conductor’s artistic aura and the skill of the orchestra. I have noticed their growth and development over the years. In my view, this has been something phenomenal.    
             
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  "The music of Nikolaus Schapfl generates an undertow of emotions." (Süddeutsche Zeitung, 4.11.2002)

"The music is melodious, varied and contains wonderful arias and duets and coloristic effects...The orchestra suite met with great success. - After having considered some 70 different musical treatments of the book, the publisher Gallimard authorized this operatic version because the Saint-Exupéry family was enthusiastic about the very inspired music."
(Regine Koch, Bavarian Theater Academy, The Prinzregenten Theater, Munich)

Nikolaus Schapfl: “His composing is skilful, technically demanding, yet very accessible to the modern day audience with beautiful melodies, rhythmic energy and exciting and colourful orchestration.
(Dr. James Stuart, Ohio Light Opera, USA)

“Antoine en serait très content." (“Antoine would be very happy.") (André de Fonscolombe, Antoine de Saint-Exupéry's cousin)

“The music enchanted us." (Saint-Exupéry's heirs)

“... very rich orchestration and instrumentation, and an outstanding piano part." (Prof. August Everding)
   
             
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