Making Musical Theatre outside Opera: Reasons and Functions

Research output: Contribution to conferenceAbstract

4 Downloads (Pure)


The paper focusses on musical theatre outside Opera houses and will show the possibilities of interaction and the functions of communication of chamber music theatre outside and after opera as an institution. Composers and their works of the 50s and 80s in former GDR and of the 60s to the 80s in Portugal will be taken as examples.
In East Germany (GDR) there was from the 1950s a large discourse about the necessity to write a national opera. The states aesthetic of Socialist realism was concentrated on the so called “heritage”, on “humanistic” pieces by Händel and Mozart until late romantic composers. The institution “opera” was occupied by that “heritage” and the attempts of national opera. Composers who were more interested in advanced compositional techniques and advanced dramaturgical structures in the 50s and 60s only rarely got the
chance to produce an opera at an opera house. Only from the 70s some composers got the possibility to get into the institution with some new ideas. But the composers also had other reasons to make musical theatre outside the opera houses: They wanted to join political discussions with their musical theatre, but this is impossible with an opera because of its long production time. In Portugal the Institution Opera in the time of the dictatorship fulfilled its function as the “reception room” of the nation with also national influenced pieces of Portuguese composers and the international repertoire. The paper will show how musical theatre outside the institution opera in GDR
and Portugal jumped into a vacuum, and made the communication about political, social, cultural and other controversial disputed questions possible.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages1
Publication statusPublished - 2015
EventENIM 2015: V Encontro Nacional de Investigação em Música - Évora, Évora, Portugal
Duration: 12 Nov 201514 Nov 2015


ConferenceENIM 2015
Abbreviated titleENIM 2015
Internet address


  • teatro musical
  • ópera


Dive into the research topics of 'Making Musical Theatre outside Opera: Reasons and Functions'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this