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date: 14 July 2020

Veselohra na mostě (‘The Comedy on the Bridge’)locked

  • Jan Smaczny

Extract

(‘The Comedy on the Bridge’)

Radio opera in one act (six Scenes) by Bohuslav Martinů to his own libretto after Václav Kliment Klicpera’s play; Prague, Czech Radio, 18 March 1937; staged in Ostrava, State Theatre, 9 January 1948.

Martinů’s two operas for radio, Hlas lesa (‘The Voice of the Forest’) and The Comedy on the Bridge, arose as a result of commissions from Czech Radio. By 1935 Czech Radio had made a number of studio broadcasts of opera, including Dvořák’s Šelma sedlák (‘The Cunning Peasant’) in 1931, and was beginning to commission works designed for transmission. Martinů’s first opera commission for radio was The Voice of the Forest, composed in April–May 1935 to a libretto by Vítězslav Nezval, and its success led to a second commission. Martinů discovered Klicpera’s comedy during summer 1935, which he spent at his family home in Polička, and was attracted by the spatial separation implicit in the drama as a suitable device for radio. He completed work on the opera on ...

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