In their new creation, ‘Burt Turrido: An Opera’, Nature Theater of Oklahoma created an opera for the first time. They tell us the story of an isolated society with humorous existentialism: a shipwrecked man is rescued just before he drowns by a beautiful and mysterious woman – perhaps she is a phantom or a mermaid? – who brings him ashore on the last bit of land that is left.
Stripped of its vegetation and populated by its former inhabitants’ ghosts, the island (formerly known as Greenland) is now ruled by a despotic King and Queen. They call the shipwrecked man Burt Turrido and initially make him their slave, though when he proves incapable of fulfilling this role, they make him their prisoner. However, because this is an opera, the tragedy does not stop here: additional ingredients include a catastrophic storm, an immaculate conception, a murder, a love triangle, a mock execution, a birth, an alien invasion complete with abduction – and this opera won’t be over until finally somebody is impaled on a narwhal tusk.Show more
Four hours of opera are nothing. But those who know Nature Theater of Oklahoma know that there little in common between the theater they make and the traditional opera theatre genre. ”Burt Turrido: an Opera” is a spectacular, wild-west performance that often skirts the cliché cliff by a hair’s breadth. In “Burt Turrido: An Opera”, Nature Theater of Oklahoma unabashedly dismantle everything they encounter in the way of the conventional structures and forms of the opera genre, only to reassemble it with great passion, humour and the courage to take risks.
Text & direction Kelly Copper, Pavol Liska
Performers Gabel Eiben, Anne Gridley, Robert M. Johanson, Bence Mezei, Kadence Neill
Music Robert M. Johanson
Set/Light Design Luka Curk
Sound design Leon Curk, Daniel Groß
Costumes Anna Sünkel
Dramaturg Künstlerhaus Mousonturm Marcus Dross
Dramaturg Schauspiel Frankfurt Katja Herlemann
Production Manager Künstlerhaus Mousonturm: Anne Kleiner
Set Design Assistant to Luka Curk Nastja Miheljak
Set and Props Technician Hanna Marlene Schnell
Production Künstlerhaus Mousonturm (Frankfurt a. M.), Schauspiel Frankfurt, Nature Theater of Oklahoma
Distribution Something Great
Photos Jessica Schäfer
Co-production Wiener Festwochen, Festspillene i Nord-Norge (Harstad), Athens & Epidaurus Festival, Espoo City Theatre – The International Theatre of Finland, HAU Hebbel am Ufer (Berlin), Noorderzon Festival of Performing Arts & Society (Groningen), Zürcher Theater Spektakel, Kampnagel (Hamburg)
A commission by Frankfurter Positionen, an initiative of the BHF BANK Foundation Funded by German Federal Cultural Foundation, Adolf und Luisa Haeuser-Stiftung für Kunst und Kulturpflege as part of the project series UNLIMITED II promoting exemplary positions in the contemporary performing arts.
Louhi Hall, Espoo Cultural Centre
3 h 40 min
English, with Finnish and English surtitles projected above the stage.