Love and Other Demons
Love and Other Demons is an opera in two acts by Hungarian composer Péter Eötvös to a libretto by the Hungarian author Kornél Hamvai. It premiered on 10 August 2008 at the Glyndebourne Festival. The libretto is based on the novel Of Love and Other Demons (1994) by Gabriel García Márquez. The opera is the result of a commission by Glyndebourne and the BBC; it was broadcast in full on BBC Radio 3 on Saturday, 11 October 2008.
Maria is living with her father who is not taking care of her. She prefers to be with the servants and slaves. When there is an eclipse of the sun, she is bitten by a dog with rabies. She suffers no reaction; nevertheless, she is brought to a convent where Father Delaura is supposed to take care of her. He is supposed to exorcise her of demons but falls in love with her. As this is recognized she is removed from the convent and the bishop himself will exorcise her demons. She dies in the process.
|Role||Voice type||Premiere cast, 10 August 2008
Conductor: Vladimir Jurowski
|Sierva Maria||soprano||Allison Bell|
a marquis and father of Maria
|Father Cayetano Delaura||baritone||Nathan Gunn|
|Dominga de Adviento,
a servant woman
an insane woman
|Orchestra||London Philharmonic Orchestra|
|Costume and lighting design||Helmut Stürmer|
|Video projection||Andu Dumitrescu|
|The Glyndebourne Chorus
At Glyndebourne, the performance lasted for 3 hours 50 minutes, including a 1 hour 20 minutes interval. The staging is a co-production with the Lithuanian National Opera and Ballet Theatre.
The instrumentation calls for:
- Woodwinds: 2 flutes (both also doubling on piccolo, second also on alto flute, 2 oboes, 2 clarinets, 1 bass clarinet, saxophone (soprano, alto, baritone), 2 bassoons (second doubling on contrabassoon)
- Brass: 4 horns, 2 trumpets, 2 trombones, 1 tuba
- Percussion (for 2 players): glockenspiel, crotales, marimba, tubular bells, 3 gongs, cow bells, triangle, cymbals (medium and low), sizzle cymbals, sleighbells (high and loud, 3–4 exotic types, of special sound colour), tam-tam (low), anvil, tambourine, bass drum, wood blocks (really high), African beans rattle, timpani, vibraphone, cencerros (really high), maracas
- harp, celesta, strings (12 · 0 · 8 · 6 · 4 (2 with 5 strings))
Unusually, Love and Other Demons consistently uses multiple languages. The different levels of narration and action in the story have their own characteristic language: English is the 'everyday language' of the noblemen, Latin is the language of the church rites, Spanish is used by Delaura whenever his conversations with Sierva touch on personal feelings, and Yoruba is the 'secret' language of the slaves.