Müller's 1980 play condenses Laclos' scandalous 1782 novel to just two characters, trapped in a post-apocalyptic world. Merteuil and Valmont, entrenched enemies and lovers, fight a bitter game of seduction and deception.
UK premiere of acclaimed opera, based on Heiner Müller's vision of Les Liaisons dangereuses.
Heiner Müller turned to Laclos' Les Liaisons dangereuses for his 1980 play Quartett, an excoriating and bitterly impassioned exploration of love, deception and humanity's appalling capacity for hatred. Leading Italian composer Luca Francesconi set the play almost word for word in his chamber opera, using his own English translation. Quartett was acclaimed at its premiere at La Scala, Milan, on 26 April 2011, highly praised for its unique and profoundly affecting musical vocabulary.
John Fulljames, Associate Director of Opera for The Royal Opera, creates a new production for the Linbury Studio Theatre. He is joined by designer Soutra Gilmour (a regular designer for the National Theatre, Old Vic and Donmar Warehouse, among others), making her Royal Opera debut. Electronic environmental sound design is realized at IRCAM by computer music designer Serge Lemouton and with recording, editing and mixing of the Choir and Orchestra of La Scala, Milan, by Julien Aléonard. Francesconi's two melismatic and fiendishly difficult vocal roles are supported by a gorgeously rich orchestral language that incorporates Berg-influenced lyricism and electronic environmental sound design.