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Eine musikalische Tragikomödie in zwei (drei) Aufzügen von Karel Josef Beneš
As early as the 1920s, Erwin Schulhoff studied Karel Josef Beneš’ poem about the Don Juan myth. In his version of the incorrigible womanizer, Beneš retained only the outward features of Tirso de Molina’s and Molière’s figure of Don Juan and parodied its traditional characterization. Schulhoff’s tragi-comedy Flammen was only performed once in his lifetime, in Brno in 1932 in a one-act version of the original with a reduced wind section. But with it he created a surreal and psychoanalytical interpretation of the Don Juan legend that sweeps Mozart, Expressionism and jazz into an allusive and shimmering score.
Product number: LS 3603-01
Edition: Performance material

Product Details


Homage to Mozart of a special kind: in his approach to the Don Juan myth, Schulhoff does not portray the libertine as a sexual predator, but as a figure eternally driven by desire. In contrast to Mozart’s Don Giovanni, the hero is not sent to hell but, like Wagner’s Flying Dutchman, is condemned to an eternal search for love and redemption. Two archaic principles, the "flames" of life (symbolised by the male figure of Don Juan) and the "flames" of death (represented by the female figure La Morte), yearn to be unified, but mutually repel each other. Man and woman, life and death, yearning and fulfilment and hope and resignation are set in Erwin Schulhoff’s only work for the stage as bold dualisms in a fascinating interplay.

Orchestral Cast

Picc. · 1 · 1 · Engl. Hr. · 1 (auch Es-Klar.) · Bassklar. · 1 · Kfg. - 4 · 1 · 0 · 0 - P. S. (Klaviaturglsp. · Xyl. · Vibr. · Trgl. · Gl. · Schellen · Beckenpaar · Tamt. · Schellentr. · Tomt. · Mil. Tr. · kl. Tr. · gr. Tr. m. Beck. · Kast. · Ratsche · Guiro · Sir. [Torpedo]) (5 Spieler) - Hfe. · Cel. · Org. (hinter der Szene) - Str. (12 · 10 · 8 · 6 · 6) -
Bühnenmusik: 3 Trp. - Jazzband I (Sopransax. · Tenorsax - Korn. - S. [Beck. · 2 Holztr. · 2 Tomt. · Mil. Tr. · gr. Tr.] - Tenorbanjo · Klav.) od. Jazzband II (Altsax. · Tenorsax. - Traps - Tenorbanjo · Klav. - Vl. [obligat])

Person Cast

Don Juan · Tenor (heldisch) - Eine Frau / Eine Nonne / Donna Anna · Mezzosopran - La Morte · Mezzosopran (auch Alt) - Sechs Frauenschatten · 3 Sopran-, 3 Altstimmen (kann auch doppelt bis dreifach besetzt werden) - Frauenchor hinter der Szene - Gemischter Chor (8. Bild) - stumme Rollen: Masken, Frauen (Harlekin, Pantalon, Pierrot, Pierrette, Colombine, während des Vorspiels zum zweiten Aufzug)
weitere Rollen ad lib.: Margarethe · Sopran - Der Komtur · Bariton (heldisch) - Pulcinella · Tenor (Buffo) - Pantalon · Bass (Buffo) - Harlekin · Bass (Buffo)

More Information

Eine musikalische Tragikomödie in zwei (drei) Aufzügen von Karel Josef Beneš
Deutsche Übersetzung von Max Brod
Herausgegeben von Andreas Krause
Czech, German
Performance material
Schott Music
Year of composition:
1923 - 1929 (1932)
140 ′
World Premiere:
April 16, 1994 Berlin, Großer Sendesaal des SFB (D) · Jane Eaglen, Sopran; Gabriele Schreckenbach, Mezzosopran; Kurt Westi, Tenor; Johann Werner Prein, Bariton; Kelly Anderson, Bass · Conductor: John Mauceri · Deutsches Symphonie-Orchester Berlin (world première as concert of the complete version)

March 17, 1995 Leipzig, Oper (D) · Conductor: Jörg Krüger · Staging: Uwe Wand · Costumes: Johannes Conen · Stage design: Johannes Conen · Organizer: Oper Leipzig (scenic world première)

Technical Details

Product number:
LS 3603-01

Preview/Media Contents



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  • Flammen
    Conductor: Jiří Rožeň
    November 26, 2022 | Praha (Czech Republic) , Národní divadlo
  • Flammen
    Conductor: Jiří Rožeň
    November 20, 2022 | Brno (Czech Republic) , Janáčkovo divadlo
  • Flammen
    Conductor: Jiří Rožeň
    November 17, 2022 | Praha (Czech Republic) , Národní divadlo — Resumption
  • Flammen
    Conductor: Jiří Rožeň
    June 24, 2022 | Praha (Czech Republic) , Národní divadlo
  • Flammen
    Conductor: Jiří Rožeň
    June 18, 2022 | Praha (Czech Republic) , Národní divadlo
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