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Wiener Staatsoper
© WienTourismus / Christian Stemper
Wiener Staatsoper

Von der Liebe Tod. Das klagende Lied. Kindertotenlieder

Premiere: September 29, 2022

Das klagende Lied
Fairy tale play for solos, mixed choir and large orchestra
Text: Gustav Mahler nach Ludwig Bechstein and den Brüdern Grimm

Kindertotenlieder
Text Friedrich Rückert

Production: Calixto Bieito
Stage Design: Rebecca Ringst


The evening of music theatre conducted by Lorenzo Viotti and staged by Calixto Bieito in a space designed by Rebecca Ringst combines two key works by Gustav Mahler. The 19-year-old's early fairy-tale cantata Das klagende Lied (1879/80) is followed by the late Kindertotenlieder from the first half of the last decade of his life (1901/04).

In Das Klagende Lied, a hybrid of lied, symphonic music and choral cantata, a series of opera plans never realised by the conservatoire graduate also came to fruition in a creative confrontation with Richard Wagner's music drama. Thus the young composer drew on the two most advanced Ring scores, Siegfried and Götterdämmerung, in terms of harmony and instrumentation, as well as on the archaic intonations of Meistersinger, and created, also as his own librettist, a far-reaching fairy-tale cosmos full of open and hidden allusions to Wagner's world of myths. Mahler wove motifs from the Brothers Grimm's Kinder- und Hausmärchen (1812-1858) and Ludwig Bechstein's Neuem deutsche Märchenbuch (1865) into the ballad "vom singenden Knochen".

Current Dates

  • Thu. 29 Sep 2022, 7 p.m.
  • Sun. 02 Oct 2022
  • Wed. 05 Oct 2022
  • Fri. 07 Oct 2022
  • Mon. 10 Oct 2022
  • Thu. 13 Oct 2022
  • Sat. 06 May 2023
  • Mon. 08 May 2023
  • Thu. 11 May 2023
  • Tue. 16 May 2023