Der Schuhu und die fliegende Prinzessin

Der Schuhu und die fliegende Prinzessin
Fairy-tale opera by Udo Zimmermann
Udo Zimmermann.jpg
The composer in 2006
TranslationThe Bird-Man and the Flying Princess
Librettist
  • Zimmermann
  • Eberhard Schmidt
LanguageGerman
Based onDer Schuhu und die fliegende Prinzessin by Peter Hacks
Premiere30 December 1976 (1976-12-30)
Semperoper

Der Schuhu und die fliegende Prinzessin (The Bird-Man and the Flying Princess) is a fairy-tale opera in three acts by Udo Zimmermann with a libretto which he wrote with Eberhard Schmidt based on the eponymous fairy tale by Peter Hacks.[1] It was first performed on 30 December 1976 at the Semperoper, staged by Harry Kupfer.

History

Zimmermann grew up and studied in the German Democratic Republic. In his opera Die zweite Entscheidung [de], he had chosen a political topic, a scientist's conflict, located in a present-day city there. In contrast, Der Schuhu und die fliegende Prinzessin is a fairy tale in a utopia, but with political analogies and allusions.[2] Zimmermann wrote the opera on a commission from the Staatsoper Dresden, after completing his opera Levin's Mühle [de]. The libretto, by the composer and Eberhard Schmidt, is based on an eponymous fairy tale by Peter Hacks, which appeared in 1964 in a literary magazine, Sinn und Form, and which was arranged in dramatic form shortly after. The opera was premiered at the Staatsoper on 30 December 1976, staged by Harry Kupfer and conducted by Peter Gülke [de].[3][4] A first performance in West Germany was staged at the Staatstheater Darmstadt in 1977, and a shorter version was presented at the Salzburg Festival in 1995,[5] directed by Michael Heinicke [de] and conducted by the composer.[6]

Der Schuhu und die fliegende Prinzessin was published by Breitkopf in both the original version which takes about 165 minutes to perform, and the abridged Salzburg version of 120 minutes.[7]