Tag Archives: Fantasy

Designing The Magic Flute: Roaring Twenties Fantasy Film

The Magic Flute is a roaring-twenties set vision. It has the beauty of a classic Louise Brooks film (like Pandora’s Box) , but live. Here, the production team – Suzanne Andrade, Barrie Kosky, and Paul Barritt – talk about the concept behind their vision for Mozart’s fantasy opera.


How did you come up with the idea of staging The Magic Flute with 1927?
Barrie Kosky
(stage director; Intendent of the Komische Oper Berlin): The Magic Flute is the most frequently performed German-language opera, one of the top ten operas in the world. Everyone knows the story; everybody knows the music; everyone knows the characters. On top of that, it is an “ageless” opera, meaning that an eight-year-old can enjoy it as much as an octogenarian can. So you start out with some pressure when you undertake a staging of this opera. I think the challenge is to embrace the heterogeneous nature of this opera. Any attempt to interpret the piece in only one way is bound to fail. You almost have to celebrate the contradictions and inconsistencies of the plot and the characters, as well as the mix of fantasy, surrealism, magic and deeply touching human emotions.

The Magic Flute (2016); Photo: Craig T. Mathew

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Iconic Productions: Fantastic Mr. Fox

“After completing my first opera, Emmeline (1996), a human tragedy, I longed to write something about the inhabitants of a very different world. Fantastic Mr. Fox is an opera for ages five through one hundred and five. I began reading Roald Dahl when I was eight years old, and I have come to relish the unique sense of humor and to know of his compassion for children. And so it is a perfect joy for me to be able to write an opera to Donald Sturrock’s libretto, which sparkles with wit and love and tells a story that has reawakened the child in me.” –Tobias Picker on composing Fantastic Mr. Fox (1998)

Fantastic Mr. Fox (1998); Photo: Ken Howard

Fantastic Mr. Fox (1998); Photo: Ken Howard

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