Most recent performance
There are currently no scheduled performances of Elektra. It was last on stage 23 September—12 October 2013 as part of the Autumn 2013/14 season.
Klytämnestra has murdered her husband, King Agamemnon. Her daughter Elektra determines to avenge her father’s death.
With the first chords of Elektra, we are plunged into a psychologically intense and violent world. The opera shocked audiences (and even its performers!) when it had its premiere in Dresden in 1909. Today, as then, Elektra’s desperate need to avenge the murder of her father by her mother makes for gripping drama. At 90 minutes, the opera is one of Strauss’s most concentrated works, and in style and instrumentation one of his most modernist scores.
The political and social fractures in early 20th-century Europe, and emerging concepts of psychology, provide a rich subtext in Charles Edwards’s production. The set and costumes allude to Classical and early 20th-century art and architecture, and highlight the moral decay at the heart of Klytämnestra’s kingdom. Strauss’s richly-orchestrated score takes the principal singers to their vocal limits. It is characterized by dramatic musical motifs, including the distinctive ‘Agamemnon’ motif, used to represent Elektra’s obsessive thoughts of revenge. This highly dramatic opera also contains passages of great vocal beauty, including Elektra’s rapturous recognition of her brother Orest, returned to avenge his father.
News and features
15 September 2016
Debate: Are intervals a frustrating distraction from the drama or a valuable break to gather thoughts?
24 February 2015
11 August 2014
26 June 2014
13 June 2014
27 May 2014