The Vienna Opera house comes to life little by little

L’Opéra de Vienne reprend vie peu à peu

L’Opéra de Vienne reprend vie peu à peu

“It is very frustrating to present of the singers of this quality in front of a hundred spectators only,” concedes the director of the state opera, Dominique Meyer.

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June 9, 2020 13h36

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The Vienna Opera house comes to life little by little

Agence France-Presse

VIENNA — A handful of spectators scattered in its large hall, the Opera house of Vienna is folded to the rule limiting drastically the public concerts, with a hint of bitterness, but relieved that the music resonates again as a “symbol”.

A night of first in the prestigious house lyric, these are usually the rustle of the long dresses, the égoportraits in the grand central staircase, the tinkling of glasses at the bar…

None of this Monday evening for the reopening of the institution after a three-month closure imposed by the pandemic of sars coronavirus. As for refreshments, the audience were given hand sanitizer before crossing, face masks on the face, the large building with the look of a ship deserted.

Gauge is limited to one hundred spectators per performance, no risk of pushing and shoving in the dressing rooms or in the hall of 1700 seats.

“It is very frustrating to present of the singers of this quality in front of a hundred spectators only,” concedes the director of the state opera, Dominique Meyer.

Frustrating and even a little unfair, ” sliding-t-he, in the eyes of the crowd on the terraces or in the recent demonstrations against racism that have brought together thousands of people in the austrian capital.

If the establishment has re-opened, without a rise in the price of the seats, so it is for “the symbol”: “it is important that the culture, which has been a little forgotten by the politicians of the world, remember that it counts”, stresses the French who will pass the hand, at the end of June, after ten years at the helm of the Vienna Opera.

“Beauty of sound”

A feeling shared by the director of the Konzerthaus, other room fame of the capital city that has re-opened with the same constraints.

“The current configuration is obviously absurd from an economic point of view, but we do it anyway because we are at the service of artists on stage and the public”, said to AFP the director Matthias Naske.

“We had to cancel 220 concerts during these 88 days to stop”, he recalls.

Even sacrifice artistic and financial to the Opera, which sees usually spend 600 000 spectators per year, and been forced to cancel 120 performances.

In the absence of the hustle and bustle of habitual representations or the warmth of the applause, the spectators enjoy a unique experience with a concert quasi-private, given by the headliners of the classical music.

After the opening of bookings, the 14 performances scheduled by the Staatsoper until the end of June were full in half an hour.

Austria, which allows since the end of may cultural events in the limit of 100 spectators in the interior, will take this gauge to 250 people in July and 500 August.

Ulrike Grunenwald, an Austrian 57 years old, living in France, told the AFP, have even passed a screening test for the coronavirus and drove more than 16 hours in order to attend with her daughter to the representation of Monday evening, a recital of the lower austrian Günther Groissböck.

“This is beautiful. I’m so happy. If you like culture and you like to live, it you miss so much,” she said, excited. Price concert: € 100 (about $150).

The feeling of rebirth is the same for Luise Bertoli, a lady met her at the Konzerthaus. “The music, I missed a lot, she says, even if it has music records at home, or listening to the television, this is not the same.”

“For us, the important thing is to be able to play”, had previously entrusted them with emotion, Daniel Froschauer, violinist and president of the Vienna Philharmonic, one of the most prestigious orchestras in the world, which was played Friday for the first time in three months.

Dominique Meyer was one of the hundred privileged to be in this concert conducted by maestro Daniel Barenboim.

“For three months I listened to the music in a box like everyone else, and when all of a sudden, the Vienna Philharmonic plays in the real audio, real sound, I couldn’t hold back a small tear, it was of extreme beauty.”

Le Soleil

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