Libretto by Jan Löwenbach / Budín (1880–1972)
based on The Canterville Ghost by Oscar Wilde (1854–1900)
Musical preparation David Švec
Stage director Ondřej Havelka
Křička’s opera shows how much the short story The Canterville Ghost by Oscar Wild is popular. Wilde pitted the lifestyle of modern Americans against the outgoing habits of a "happy English home," as represented by an ancient castle that the American Minister bought together with an ancient ghost. The setting of the opera was changed (Czechoslovakia after the First World War), the authors also added a current topic at that time: the land offices practice. There was also a love affair between the earl of the Satalice Castle Jiří and the daughter of the American Minister Elida involved in the plot. Křička used the popular methods of so-called Zeitoper (dance forms of entertaining music of the 1920s, jazz, revue style, film projection), however the result seemed more like an operetta, in which folk songs and waltz rhythms were significant as well.
The opera premiere was held on November 27, 1929, in Brno, and it was conducted by Antonín Balatka. Here at the NDM we introduce a remake intended for German theatres; this version was staged for the first time in Wrocław in November 1931. It was Max Brod, a German writer from Prague who, among other things, contributed to the international promotion of the work of Franz Kafka, Jaroslav Hašek, and Leoš Janáček. The Ostrava audience could get acquainted with this opera following year in Jaroslav Vogel’s musical preparation.
Performed in the Czech original with English subtitles
Premieres on 17 and 18 April 2021 at the Antonín Dvořák Theatre