Dienstag aus Licht


Performance : October 24th, 2020, Philharmonie de Paris.

Karlheinz Stockhausen (1928-2007)
Dienstag aus Licht (1977-1991) [Tuesday from Light]

Dienstag aus Licht, the day of war, is devoted to the relationship and conflict between Michael and Lucifer.  The fourth part of the cycle Licht (in order of composition) is being presented as the third so as to highlight the interaction between the two characters who have just appeared in Donnerstag and Samtag aus Licht.

Team: 14 soloists, trumpet and trombone ensemble, actors, choir, ‘european orchestra’ & électronique
First performance of the production: october 24th 2020, Philharmonie de Paris
Color: geranium red | Celestial body : Mars | Spiritual features : idealism and devotion

Dienstags-Gruss | Tuesday’s Greeting

Both music and ideology are the grounds for the battle waged between the two ensembles portraying Lucifer and Michael. In center stage, the soprano who is Eve weeps over their conflict, begging them to settle their differences.

Act 1 : Jahreslauf | Course of the Year

Lucifer invites Michael to run the “Course of the Year,” a challenge where Lucifer will halt the passage of time and Michael will endeavor to restore the movement of time.  On four occasions Lucifer will cause time to come to a standstill, doing so by means of “temptations” (luscious food, a voluptuous woman or a storm), and on all four occasions Michael will cause time to turn again by means of “incentives” (the promise that the winner will be paid a large number of marks, or a monkey in a sports car will roar onto the stage).  Lucifer, with a certain irony, declares Michael to be the winner and urges him to prepare for a much fiercer battle.

Act II : Invasion-Explosion mit Abschied | Invasion – Explosion with Farewell

Dienstag turns away from comedy and moves towards tragedy.  On stage and off stage, the entire concert auditorium is turned into a battlefield.  The groups of instruments form regiments of artillery pitted one against the other.  One of the trumpeters is hit and collapses.  A Red Cross nurse holds him in her arms and they perform a poignant duo.

Fighting resumes, and Michael’s troops struggle and finally retreat, so Lucifer’s fighters attempt to take control of their shelter.  The fighters disappear, and a new world is revealed, bathed in white light.

Enter an exuberant, euphoric musician named Synthi-Fou, rigged out with synthesizers and speakers.  Reaching ever-increasing levels of ecstasy, he plays a spectacular, futuristic solo, as colors and lights surround him.  The warring parties cease their battle and gaze in fascination at him before facing into nowhere.  A final countdown, from thirteen to one, marks the end of Dienstag aus Licht.

Tuesday’s Greeting

1 solo soprano
9 trumpets
9 trombones
2 synthesizers
1 choir
1 conductor & assistant

Act I : Course of the year

1 tenor
1 bass
4 performers
1 actor-singer
3 actors
1 little girl
1 ‘beautiful woman’
1 ‘european orchestra’ : 3 harmoniums, 3 flutes, 3 soprano saxophones, 1 electric guitar, 1 harpsichord, 3 percussionnists.
1 sound projectionist

Act II | Invasion – Explosion avec Adieu| Invasion – Explosion with Farewell

1 soprano
1 tenor
1 bass
3 solo trumpets (1st trumpet plays the solo flugelhorn)
3 trombones
2 synthesizer players
2 percussionists
6 tutti trumpets
6 tutti trombones
1 choir
1 conductor (invisible)

The totality of Dienstag features sound projection and electronic music. Unlike other LICHT operas, the Greeting and the Farewell are played inside the concert hall.

Premiere of the opera
28 mai 1993, Leipzig Opera, Germany.

First performance of the production
October 24th, 2020

Total duration
2h30mn + 1 intermission

Conception & musical direction Maxime Pascal
Conception & staging Damien Bigourdan
Conception & video design Nieto
Scenography Myrtille Debièvre
Lighting Design Catherine Verheyde
Costumes Pascale Lavandier
Sound Projection Florent Derex
Computer Music Design Augustin Muller

Eve Elise Chauvin (Gruss) & Léa Trommenschlager (Act II)
General of the Michael-Troops Henri Deléger (trumpet)
General of the Lucifer-Troops Mathieu Adam (trombone)
Synthi-Fou Sarah Kim (organ)