Rehearsals start for Faust's Damnation

Ben Baur directs Berlioz "FAUST" as an expressive folk theatre

The directing team around director and set designer Ben Baur, choreographer Rachele Pedrocchi, musical director Yannis Pouspourikas, head dramaturge Arne Langer and Uta Meenen responsible for the costumes started rehearsals today for the "dramatic legend" Faust's Damnation by Hector Berlioz.

The question of "What is good and what is bad?" runs like a thread through the entire production. Ben Baur speaks of a symbiosis between the work of Hector Berlioz and the imposing scene of the DomStufen-Festspiele in Erfurt. The Domplatz has long been regarded not only as a Christian-religious place, but also as a place of markets, funfairs and other festivities, and is therefore ideally suited to presenting Faust's Damnation as a kind of folk theatre, lively and sensual, with powerful-voiced choirs at the centre. The Dom and the Domstufen are not only the backdrop, but also players themselves. For this purpose, the stage axis is turned for the first time towards the High Choir with its medieval stained glass, in order to enhance the effect accordingly.

Yannis Pouspourikas, Musical Director, describes the theatrical music of French composer Hector Berlioz as extremely visual. "The music creates images that you can enjoy with your eyes closed," says Pouspourikas. The audience can look forward to numerous turns between mainly short arias by the soloists and large choral scenes with an extraordinary variety of sounds and emotional depth. Berlioz already answers the question of what happens to Faust in the end in the title of his work, thus including Mephisto's message that no matter whether good or bad, in the end we all end below the ground.

Uta Meenen, responsible for the costumes, helps the characters of Faust's Damnation to become oversized with huge hats, masks and hairstyles that are not only colorful but also of extreme proportions.

photo Fabian Drews | f.l.t.r.: Rachele Pedrocchi (choreography), Ben Baur (director and stage), Uta Meenen (costumes), Yannis Pouspourikas (musical direction)