The Man of Dreams

A chamber opera by António Chagas Rosa

Absolute Creation

São Luiz Teatro Municipal

From 4 to 6 February 2022, Lisbon

 

LOOKING FOR CO-PRODUCERS AND PARTNERS FOR TOURING

 

Opera in 7 Scenes

Based on the homonymous novel by Mário de Sá-Carneiro “I master my dreams, I dream what I want. I live what I want.”

 

António Chagas Rosa, Music and Libretto

Jan Wierzba, Musical Director

Miguel Loureiro, Stage Director

Helena de Medeiros, Costumes and Props

Set designer, light designer and video to be announced

 

Ensemble MPMP

Catarina Molder (soprano), Man of Dreams

Christian Luján (baritone), Narrator

Length: 1h15min

M/12

Media Partner: RTP2

Production: Ópera do Castelo

Co-production: Projecto Travessa da Ermida, São Luiz Teatro Municipal

 

 

 

Project Presentation

(genesis, synopsis, thematic, concept and instrumentation)

 

THE MAN OF DREAMS – A CHAMBER OPERA

Genesis

The libretto to this opera was written by the composer himself, based on the homonymous novel O Homem dos Sonhos (The man of dreams) written in 1913 by Mário de Sá-Carneiro, in Paris, city where the Portuguese poet lived, during the last years of his short life and where he would commit suicide in 1916, with only 25 years of age.
As a literary text unfolds esthetical elements typical of Symbolism and Futurism, always with great dramatic intensity, announcing in its own way Modernism and having strongly influenced Fernando Pessoa. Dreams, day-dreams and madness represent relevant topics.

 

CROSSING THE LIMITS OF HUMAN EXPERIENCE Between dream and madness

Synopsis

“The man of Dreams” tell us the story about a mysterious elegant Russian man, Mário de Sá-Carneiro met in a greasy Parisian café, in his poor student days.
This bizarre character spent one night long, describing his secret and explaining the reasons of his endless happyness: he travelled in dreams to places with new indescribable colors, to cities where one could breathe music, to countries where there were more than two sexes and where soul was visible and body not...Eventually he succeeded transcending his fastidious life boredom, through a continuous oneiric trance: “Well, I’ve managed to change my existence and I do it everyday! I have access not only to everything that exists, but also to what doesn’t exist.”

At the end, the enigmatic man of dreams vanishes. Has he ever existed?

How much from him is real or imagination? Is he mad or sane? Is this character out of a dream?

 

AN OPERA REFLECTING ABOUT HUMAN CONDITION

Thematic and Conception

This synthetic opera is built in 7 scenes, all alternated with instrumental interludes and was written for a soprano, with a powerful dramatical expression- the poet’s “alter-ego “ incarnating the man of dreams himself, for baritone – the narrator (poet) and an instrumental ensemble of 10 musicians.

Its evasive visionary and timeless thematic resumes on one hand, the eternal human dissatisfaction and continuous obsession in transcending limits. Limits of time, space, color and genre. And on the other hand, the premonitory and structuring fascinating power of dream, which ultimately molds and guides human life in its existential march, as global society or as individual. Everything we are, was eventually dreamed and transformed in visible material – reality.

 

Instrumentation

Violin, Horn, Basse, Flute, Saxophone, Basson, Trombone, Accordeon, Piano, Percussion.