Opera by Nader Mashayekhi

Libretto: Nadja Kayali & Angelika Messner

Debut: 13th of March 2013 at the Theater Osnabrück, commissioned work

Direction: Carin Marquart

Musical direction: Daniel Inbal

The opera, based on the life of Persian poet Nizami who created characters such as Turandot in his famously epic love stories, engages with women’s roles in the Islamic society with solution-oriented attempts at emancipation. Nizami falls in love with the strong and confident slave Apak. He marries her, yet cannot prevent the inherent patriarchal structures from destroying her. At the same time, female figures from his fantasies lead him to a more progressive view on the role of women whose emancipation he henceforth prioritizes in his work.

“Nader Mashayekhi commissioned … a diverse libretto that skillfully connects temporal and narrative layers in three acts.” (FAZ)

“In the almost 90-minute long production, elements of fantasy and reality are blended virtuously just like the past and the present. The poet Nizami meets the willful and deeply real slave Apak as well as fantasy figures that reject men’s claim to power.” (Die Zeit)

Photos © Klaus Fröhlich