Monday, May 30, 2016

Michael Nagy to portray gay king Edward II in Berlin

Edward II and Michael Nagy
Barihunk Michael Nagy will play the title role in Swiss composer Andrea Lorenzo Scartazzini  new opera about Edward II. The piece will be performed from February 19-March 9 at the Deutsche Oper Berlin with hunkentenor Ladislav Elgr singing the role of his alleged lover Piers de Gaveston.

The libretto by Thomas Jonigk focuses entirely on the role of the outsider Edward II and looks at society’s attitude towards homosexuals both then and now. Whether the close bond between Edward and Gaveston in the early 14th century was sexual in nature remains a contested issue, but among art circles Edward II has long been an icon of the gay movement. Gaveston was decapitated for being gay and King Edward II was executed in 1327 by having a red hot roasting spit shoved into his anus.

The subject matter inspired Christopher Marlowe’s bloody 1593 play about the self-assertive strivings of the hapless English king, the 1923 version by Bertolt Brecht of the same name and Derek Jarman’s 1992 famous film adaptation “Edward II.” 

Scartazzini most recent operatic work was The Sandman, which premiered in 2012 at the Theater Basel with Christof Loy directing. Tickets for Edward II are on sale now online.

Nagy can next be heard on June 9 and 10 at the Gewandhaus in Leipzing performing Bach's St Matthew Passion with Peter Mattei and Ann Hallenberg. On June 19 and 20, he joins tenor Klaus Florian Vogt for Mahler's Das Lied von der Erde with the Munich Philharmonic. 

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