The Emperor of Atlantis

Next week Faculty Gallery, Monash University, will host a rare performance of The Emperor of Atlantis, an opera created in the Nazi-Germany concentration camp of Terezín, with accompanying exhibition by visiting German artist Christian Herrnbeck which documents present day depictions of the camp.

Presented by IOPERA in association with Monash Academy of Performing Arts, this gripping and ravishingly scored moral fable is bold, multimedial and multi-layered. A series of projected images, and an introductory text collage with music by award-winning Israeli composer Gilad Hochman, introduces and explore the opera’s themes.

The photographic exhibition by Christian Herrnbeck includes 120 present-day pictures of the Nazi ghetto-camp of Terezín (Theresienstadt), and recounts two events that happened in this ‘waiting room for death’ in 1943: the terrible story of the children of Białystok and the creation of the opera Der Kaiser von Atlantis. The images are accompanied by a translation of a poem by H. G. Adler, a survivor of Terezín.

The Emperor of Atlantis is showing next week, 10 – 14 July.  Tickets: $25 – $40, available here. For more information visit the Faculty Gallery website.

The Emperor of Atlantis

Christian Herrnbeck, Surgery room, Small Fortress, Terezín 2010, digital print on archive paper, 45 x 30 cm. Courtesy of the artist.