Gustav Vasa (1496-1560) © Michael van Geyt / TT Nyhetsbyrån
Ebba Lejonclou . Photo: Paola Granado
Mikael Horned. Photo: Marksu Gårder
Tobias Ringborg. Photo: Mats Bäcker
Gustaf Sjökvists Kammarkör
Members of the Royal Stockholm Philharmonic Orchestra. Photo: Mats Lundqvist
A forgotten Swedish national opera.
Sunday 11 June 2023 15.00Ends approximately 17.30
Price:380 SEK. Note! Intermission
Gustaf Wasa unfolds during the Danish siege of Stockholm in the early 1520s. It reaches a macabre peak at the coronation banquet of the Danish king, Christian the Tyrant, and the subsequent Stockholm Bloodbath. The Danes threaten to continue the bloodbath with women and children if Gustaf Wasa does not give up the struggle for freedom.
The music was composed by German composer Johann Gottlieb Naumann, who was summoned to Sweden when Gustav III had an idea for an opera. Court poet Johan Henric Kellgren wrote the text, following detailed sketches by Gustav III. Gustaf Wasa had its world premiere in 1786 and it was Sweden’s national opera for a long time.
Naumann combined the best of Italian and French styles in the music. “If the elevated and magnificent aspects of French opera are joined with the melodic elements of Italian opera, this will be the most beautiful art it could be,” he wrote in a letter. The opera was a hit and was the most played Swedish opera over the years – but then fell into obscurity.
This gem is now being performed in a concert version, with vocalists who are among the best in Sweden. They include soprano Elin Rombo and Hillevi Martinpelto, tenors Michael Weinius and Joel Annmo, and baritone Karl-Magnus Fredriksson. The Gustaf Sjökvist Chamber Choir is also participating. Tobias Ringborg conducts, and has led the Royal Stockholm Philharmonic Orchestra on numerous occasions before. He often spotlights both older and newer works from the Swedish repertoire.
In collaboration with the Swedish Academy.
The musicApproximate times
Johann Gottlieb Naumann Gustaf Wasa117 min
- Royal Stockholm Philharmonic Orchestra
- Tobias Ringborg conductor
- Michael Weinius tenor
- Joel Annmo tenor
- Karl-Magnus Fredriksson baritone
- Elin Rombo soprano
- Hillevi Martinpelto soprano
- Karin Mobacke soprano
- Ebba Lejonclou mezzo-soprano
- Mikael Horned bass/baritone
- Nicklas Bjärnhall Prytz tenor
- Mårten Wåhlström bass
- Gustaf Sjökvists Kammarkör
- Horace Engdahl host