Opera without Victims

© Nik Schölzel

Critical Classics – Opera without Victims

This Website is about non-discriminatory editions of Operas, Operettas and Oratorios. The initiative „Critical Classics“ publishes editions of such works with libretti aproximated to modern standards by experts in diversity and opera. For more information, please go to our ABOUT page. 

Critical Classics Edition of „Die Zauberflöte“ is now released

Critical Classics has published its non-discriminatory edition of „Die Zauberflöte“ at the INTERNATIONAL MUSIC SCORE LIBRARY PROJECT (IMSLP). You can download also the libretto, the piano vocal score and an Introduction from this and from befriended websites. If you are interested, please go to our DOWNLOAD page. Alternatively, you may download the material from the websites of LANDESMUSIKRAT NRW. NEUKÖLLNER OPER or OPERA EUROPA (Members Section).

Critical Classics‘ first ‘Isms’ workshop took place (online) on 11.06.2024

Here, we talked about some of the most important ‘isms’ found in operas such as racism, sexism, ageism and related topics such as the depiction of femicide and discussed our edition of „Die Zauberflöte“ with participants from all fields of theatre practice and academics as a practical example. We enjoyed the productive debate immensely and we are looking forward to following up on many aspects as well as discussing them in more depth in further workshops! At the moment, we are also designing workshops and talks on our work and ‘isms’ in opera for university contexts. Feel free to get in touch with us!

Radio feature about Critical Classics on Deutschlandfunk

On Tuesday, 09.07.2024, 10.05pm, a radio feature by music journalist Thilo Braun with Critical Classics team members Aşkın-Hayat Doğan, Berthold Schneider and Julia Jones will be broadcast on Deutschlandfunk’s „Musikszene“. Tune in to hear in depth about our edition of “Die Zauberflöte” and the debate surrounding our project as well as the changing of operatic texts in general. You can also hear our versions of the duet „Bei Männern“ and a recording of the new Papagena-Papageno-dialogues recorded by Deutschlandfunk for this feature! If you don’t want to wait: listen to the duet in our Download section.

The Landesmusikrat NRW and Critical Classics have agreed an official partnership.

The Landesmusikrat NRW supports the aims of the initiative, in particular the creation of editions which include the original texts in their entirety and provide all possibilities of faithfulness to the intentions of the authors, but which also propose alternative versions and explain the contexts.

The results of the initiative’s work will be presented by the Landesmusikrat NRW as an umbrella organisation with the relevant member associations and, if necessary will be further developped. Our focus is primarily on oratorios that are frequently performed by music lovers in North Rhine-Westphalia. Here, the stimulation of discourse can lead to a valuable sensitisation of performers and music lovers in the amateur music scene.

Prof. Dr. Christine Siegert, Präsidentin des Landesmusikrats NRW

Prof. Dr. Robert v. Zahn, Generalsekretär des Landesmusikrats NRW

„From now on, not only the original text of the Mozart opera must be read critically, but also that of the Edition by Critical Classics – but it’s worth it!“ Deutschlandfunk, 12 Feb. 2024

National radio Deutschlandfunk Kultur und Deutschlandradio as well as WDR 3 have broadcast programmes on CC. In „Tonart“ (8′) you hear Leyla Ercan, in „Streitkultur“ (25′) in DLR, you can hear an 8 min review on the Critical Classics Edition of „Die Zauberflöte“ in „Musikjournal“. Please klick on the Buttons below.