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TILL EULENSPIEGEL. Singspiel in zwei Akten

Composer: Karetnikow, Nikolai
Lyricists: Karetnikow / Lungin / Gruber / Harders-Wuthenow (dt.)
Genre: Stage work
Instrumentation: - 5 S, MS, 4 A, 4 T, 4 Bar, 9 B, beliebige Stimmlage - Chorsolisten: 3 S, 3 A, 8 T, 7 Bar, B - gem. Chor - Frauenstimmen und Mnnerstimmen 3(Picc,AFl),3(EnglHorn),3(Es-Klar,BKlar),2 - 4,3(Picc),4,1 - 3 Schl (Pk, Schellen, Holzbl, Diplipito, Bongos, 2 Tomt, Tamb, MilitrTr, RhrTr, gr.Tr, Bk, Tam-t, gl, Glsp, Xyl, Vibr), Harfe, Klav, Cel, Cemb, Org, Streicher

Content:

In the Prologue, comedians depict Tills birth and baptism. The wise Katline declares that Philip, the Spanish king, was born at the same time. In this way, the fate of Till Eulenspiegel, who embodies the free and cheerful spirit of Flanders, and that of Philip, the executioner of the Netherlanders, are bound together. The first act shows the marketplace of Damme. Till and his lover Nele tell the citizens fortunes. Because Till makes fun of the church and insults a monk, he is banned from Damme. On the road, he makes friends with the fat Lamme. Till is supposed to bring money, intended for his Uncle Joost, to Gent for the Geusen who are fighting against Spain. At the Carnival in Damme in honour of Philip II., Tills father Klaas is arrested; he was denounced by the fishmonger for owning a Flemish Bible. Klaas is already ready to burn at the stake of the Inquisition, when Till is also arrested upon his return, together with his mother Sootkin. Sootkin is tortured to death. Till and Lamme flee to the camp of the Geusen. Nele, who is meanwhile waiting for Till, asks her mother Katline to tell her fortune. The two women are overheard by the fishmonger. Till und Lamme fight in a sea battle against the Spaniards on the side of the victorious Geusen. Meanwhile, Katline is sentenced to a water test; although this proves that she is not a witch, she is taken out of the water too late and dies in Neles arms. The Geusen celebrate their victory and want to take revenge on the hated Inquisition by hanging the monks they are holding as prisoners. Till tries to prevent this atrocity and is then sentenced to be hanged himself. Only Neles unexpected appearance saves him from the executioner; according to old law, a woman saves a condemned man when she takes him as her husband at the foot of the gallows. Till and Nele return to Damme, finding chaos and desolation there. In the ruins of Tills parents house, they encounter the fishmonger, meanwhile insane, who falls into the well and dies looking for the executed Klaass money. Beside themselves, Nele and Till recognise the destruction taking place all around them. With the help of a mysterious potion, they want to tell the future but Till dies from this drink. The comedians repeat the foolish baptism of the Prologue at his funeral Till awakes to immortality.

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