Serbian performance artist Marina Abramović has premiered her first opera, 7 Deaths of Maria Callas, at the Bavarian State Opera House in Munich. The show, which was delayed since April due to the coronavirus, will become available to stream online on the opera house website starting from 5 September.
The performance, directed by Abramović and conducted by Yoel Gamzou, is based on the life story of American-Greek soprano Maria Callas and her intense love affairs.
Abramović says that she identifies with Callas’s emotional depth. “The first time I heard Maria Callas on the radio, I was 14,” Abramović recalls in a video discussion with theatre director Nikolaus Bachler. “It was like electricity.”
Due to the coronavirus pandemic, the opera house has been forced to reduce its 2,300 seat capacity to just 500 for live performances. To make up for the reduced numbers, 7 Deaths of Maria Callas will be broadcast live for free on several of TV channels — Staatsoper.TV, BR-Klassik Concert, and Arte Concert — on 5 September.