A lyrical and fantastical play in two parts - 1920

Composer Walter Braunfels · Libretto by the composer based on Aristophanes
In German with German and English surtitles | New Production

Saturday, 31. October 2020
06:00 pm

Open ticket sales

Prices L , € - /142 /117 /- /- /- /- /-

buy tickets

Premiere at 31. October 2020


Please be aware that we had to temporarily extend our orchestra pit. Therefore your view on the stage might be limited and the distribution of price categories in the stalls are subject to change.

To List of Performances

Dates & Tickets

To List of Performances


Ingo Metzmacher
Frank Castorf
Set Design
Aleksandar Denić
Costume Design
Adriana Braga Peretzki
Lothar Baumgarte
Stefanie Nirschl, Andreas Deinert
Timo Raddatz
Stellario Fagone
Rainer Karlitschek

Wolfgang Koch
Wiedhopf, einstens ein Mensch, nun König der Vögel
Günter Papendell
Caroline Wettergreen
Emily Pogorelc
1. Drossel
Yajie Zhang
2. Drossel
Eliza Boom
Bálint Szabó
Theodore Platt
George Vîrban
Charles Workman
Michael Nagy
  • Bayerisches Staatsorchester
  • Chorus of the Bayerische Staatsoper

Cast for all dates

To List of Performances


To List of Performances

Learn more

It has literally come to be – the “cloud-cuckoo-land” of Aristophanes’s ancient comedy, The Birds. With unprecedented hubris the birds believe they are the Gods’ equal and can build their own powerful state, which will practically starve the Gods. How mistaken they are – at once foolhardy and ridiculously risible, with a tragic end for the rebels. The world premiere of his adaptation of the ancient material in Munich in 1920 was a huge breakthrough for composer Walter Braunfels. An enormous success, followed in Munich alone by fifty performances! His version is idiosyncratic and stand-alone – Braunfels adds a deeply romantic aspect to the piece, while remaining true to the comedy. He not only understands the new polity of the birds in political terms; he also does so artistically and lyrically. The new state’s failure is attributed to both a lust for power and a misplaced idealisation. The ancient myth is reflected in the sorrowful experiences of a world of yesterday. For Braunfels the ruins of the First World War are visible signs all around of the both political and spiritual decay – his opera is a final emphatic uprising against the fragmentation of the present. One hundred years later the work’s first new production now follows at the point of its world premiere.



To List of Performances


Ingo Metzmacher begann seine Karriere in Frankfurt beim Ensemble Modern und am dortigen Opernhaus sowie am Théâtre Royal de La Monnaie in Brüssel. Von 1997 bis 2005 war er Generalmusikdirektor der Hamburgischen Staatsoper, danach Chefdirigent an De Nationale Opera in Amsterdam und beim Deutschen Symphonie-Orchester Berlin, wo er ebenfalls die künstlerische Leitung innehatte; seit 2016 ist er Intendant der KunstFestSpiele Herrenhausen. In den letzten Jahren dirigierte er regelmäßig bei den Salzburger Festspielen sowie u. a. am Royal Opera House Covent Garden in London, am Teatro alla Scala in Mailand, an der Opéra national de Paris und an der Wiener und Berliner Staatsoper. Ein Schwerpunkt seiner Arbeit liegt auf der Musik des 20. und 21. Jahrhunderts. (Stand: 2020)

To List of Performances

Zurück zur Übersicht