Tales of Liberation

Tales of Liberation was commissioned by Den Ny Opera, Esbjerg in 2009
Libretto: Rebecca Simpson (Engelsk libretto)
First performance: As of yet, not premiered
First Cast:
Solo voices: Soprano/Hannah Kaminski, Mezzo/Karin Vesterlund, Tenor/Jannick Vesterlund, Bariton/Hanrik Vesterlund, Bass/Hans Kauffmann
Orchestra: :1-1-1-1 / 2-0-0-0 / perc., pno / 2-2-2-2-2
Duration: 120 min. in two acts
Publisher: Edition PaperMusic

Discography | See video | Hear sound | Music sample |

Program Note:
Tales of Liberation is the story of the family Vesterlund, placed in an unnamed small town in Denmark with an important railway junction, during the time of the German occupation of Denmark of the Second World War. The widowed father, Henrik, who runs a long-established auto-repair company which is now busy with vehicles brought by train from Germany, lives with his son, Jannick and his older daughter, Karin. Jannick is the pivotal character of the opera. He is a boy who tells wonderful stories. Sensitive, affected by his mother’s death when he was a small child, the situation of Denmark and his father’s collaboration with the invaders adds to the troubled nature of his adolescence. The opera’s plot is ignited by Hannah knocking at the Vesterlund’s door one night to seek refuge. Her father, an architect and skilled joiner, had become acquainted with Vesterlund and built a bookshelf for him at the beginning of the war, with the peculiar feature of a secret compartment. Her parents were handed over to the Nazis as illegal immigrants while Hannah avoided arrest. The last thing Hannah’s father had been able to communicate to her was to seek out Vesterlund in the case of emergency, “He is a good man”. Vesterlund reluctantly hides her, keeping this fact from his children, and  even more importantly, their frequent house guest, Hans Kauffmann, commanding German officer in their small town. This field of conflict runs its course to the day of Denmark’s liberation, shadowed by a tale that Jannick spins during its course, reflecting the events, and emotions encircling his small, and at the same time very large world.