The first ever RING AWARD winners from 1997, director Holger Müller-Brandes and stage designer Katrin Lea Tag, returned to Graz to stage the first production of Karol Szymanowski’s “King Roger” at Oper Graz. They showed a compelling psychological interpretation of this rarely staged opera with strong mystical images.
„Director Holger Müller-Brandes allows for the quiescence that this drama of ideas needs. He has a high sensibility for musical sequences and does not try to impose wilful action on them […] After the intermission the smooth golden stage turned into earth – Katrin Lea Tag created an impressive stage suitable for the laconic plot, which is formatively lit by Sebastian Alphons. The costumes, designed by herself and Lejla Ganic, are plain and contemporary and only allow for ornamental splendour only in Edrisi.” (Bernd Feuchtner, Klassikinfo)
“In his production at Oper Graz, director Holger Müller-Brandes visualises the psychological processes instead of simply illustrating the external plot. […] in any case, the inclined, golden-hued setting by Katrin Lea Tag as well as the light design by Sebastian Alphons produce strong images that are as mystical as they are ecstatic, just as Szymanowski’s music is.” (Isabella Steppan, Bachtrack)
Here is an interview in German with director Holger Müller-Brandes about the „all-too-human and the search for oneself“ in „King Roger“.