Pavel Drábek

Pavel Drábek
Pavel Drábek

Pavel Drábek is the founder, librettist and (until 2015) the artistic director of the Ensemble Opera Diversa. He collaborates on most of his projects with composer Ondřej Kyas.

Operas

  • Pickelhering 1607 aneb Nový Orfeus z Bohemie (Pickelhering 1607 or The New Orpheus of Bohemia, 2007), a comic chamber opera (100′) for 9 singers and an 18-piece orchestra
  • Společná smrt milenců v Šinagawě (The Strange Suicide of Two Lovers in Shinagawa, 2009), a half-evening poetic opera (65′) for 5 singers and a 10-piece orchestra
  • Dýňový démon ve vegetariánské restauraci (The Pumpkin Demon in a Vegetarian Restaurant, 2010), a gastronomical Gesamtkunstwerk for 4 solos, a Lucifer, a small kitchen chorus and a chamber orchestra (of 7)
  • Ponava (Zmizelé řeky) (Ponava: The Lost Rivers, 2013), a poetic opera about the mysterious rivers under our feet
  • Čaroděj a jeho sluha (The Conjuror and his Slave, 2016), a horror fairytale opera about serving in hell

Minioperas (a selection)

  • Rýbrcoulova tůň (Rübezahl’s Pond, 2003), a 30-minute miniopera in honour of the Krkonoše Mountains, for 4 voices, oboe, clarinet, violin, viola, cello and harpsichord
  • miniopera cycle Labské horrorroperry (Horrorroperras of the Elbe River, 2004-2005), a triptych for voices and four instruments (oboe or flute or violin, viola, clarinet, bassoon):
    1. The Laughing Head (cantata), a horror cantata for two solos and a small male choir
    2. The Elbe (hydrological aria), an aria for solo and small mixed choir
    3. The Talking Cow (opera), a horror opera for seven singers and a talking cow

 

  • miniopera cycle Japonský triptych (Japanese Marriage Minioperas, 2006–2008), four (not three!) minioperas for a couple of voices and four instruments, inspired by the Japanese kyogen farce:
  1. Loupežnická nevěsta(The Robber Bride, 8′), for soprano and bass, based on the kyogen Yasematsu (see recording on YouTube)
  2. Listonoš aneb Krytí plemenné něvské maškarády(The Postman or Breeding the Neva Mascarade, 10′), for soprano, baritone and bass (see recording on YouTube)
  3. Muž a žena v loďce(Husband and Wife on a Boat, 9′), for soprano and bass, after a story from the Japanese rakugo art (see recording on YouTube)
  4. Zpívající ženich (The Singing Bridegroom, 15’), for tenor, bass and a tacit soprano, after the koygens Fukitori and Iwahashi
  • Metařka listí (The Sweeper of Leaves or The Sudden Disappearance of Autumn, 2003), a late autumn city cantata for soprano, small male choir, flute, viola, cello and harpsichord

Other Works

  • Everyman čili Kdokoli (Everyman, 2013), a radio play by Pavel Drábek with Ondřej Kyas’s songs, an adaptation of the late medieval morality play Everyman, commissioned and produced by the Czech Radio 3 Vltava (premiere broadcast on 23 April 2013; directed Hana Mikulášková, dramaturgy Hana Hložková)
  • Everyman čili Kdokoli (Everyman, 2013), an adapted stage version play for the Ensemble Opera Diversa, directed by Tomáš Studený (premiere in August 2013)[5]
  • Leviatan (Leviathan, 2014), a play by Pavel Drábek, Lizzy Steel (McEllan) and Mark McLaughlin (McEllan) with Ondřej Kyas’s songs, inspired by the short stories of Joseph Roth, produced by the Ensemble Opera Diversa, directed by Tomáš Studený (premiere in December 2014)
  • Nissenův korál (Nissen’s Jewel, 2016), a radio play by Pavel Drábek with songs by Ondřej Kyas, based on the stage play Leviatan, commissioned and produced by the Czech Radio 3 Vltava (premiere broadcast in September 2016; directed Hana Mikulášková, dramaturgy Hana Hložková)
  • Princ Mucedorus a princezna Amadina (Prince Mucedorus and Princess Amadina, 2017), an original radio play by Pavel Drábek with Ondřej Kyas’s music, based on the anonymous Elizabethan play Mucedorus (1598); commissioned and produced by the Czech Radio 2 Dvojka (premiere broadcast on 22 October 2017; directed by Lukáš Kopecký, dramaturgy Hana Hložková)

 

Opera librettos

  • Coffee Cantata (2005), a Czech translation of J. S. Bach’s Schweigt stille, plaudert nicht Cantata
  • Dalibor (2008), a new libretto for Bedřich Smetana’s opera, commissioned and produced by the Moravian Opera in Olomouc
  • Šarlatán (2011), an English translation of Pavel Haas’s opera, for Pamela Howard (http://pamelahoward.co.uk/)