After Stanisław Moniuszko, Żeleński was the most outstanding Polish opera composer of the late 19th century. Discover this unfamiliar jewel live from Warsaw with a fairy tale plot; an opera run through with Polish motifs and touching lyricism.
Władysław Żeleński, a composer and teacher at the Warsaw Conservatoire, remains slightly in the shadow of Moniuszko. His GOPLANA is however a very fine piece, its lyricism showing affinity with Moniuszko’s works. Żeleński wove Polish motifs into his music: the polonaise, kujawiak, mazurka and oberek.
With his librettist Ludomił German, who was inspired by the text of Słowacki’s BALLADYNA, they made an almost Shakespearian drama into something of a fairy tale. The protagonist is a goddess of the lake, a fantasy character with a lyrical coloratura voice. The tale nonetheless retains its cruelty: there are three corpses and evil reigns. Director Janusz Wiśniewski has blended these elements into the very distinctive world of his rich imagination. Wiśniewski emerged as leading figure in Polish theatre in the 1980s.