Epistle 540: Holberg’s Opera

By Terje J Tveit

Orig. Epistel 540: Holbergs opera

Written, Designed and Directed by Terje J Tveit

Musical Director: Markus Kvint

Produced by Larvik Barokk Festival

Co-produced by Bergen Nasjonale Opera

Co-produced by Ibsen Stage Company

Produced with the generous support of

Herregården i Larvik

Larvik, Norway

8 - 10 September, 2017

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© Image courtesy of Michel Thomas

Markus Kvint

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© Image courtesy of Martin Mydtskov Rønne

Tuva Semmingsen

Holberg’s Opera

In 1714-16, the young author Ludvig Holberg and his traveling companion Viscount Thott go on a trip to Rome. This becomes the beginning of a long friendship with bitter and unexpected consequences. Viscount Thott is a casanova and a womaniser. He is also an art and book collector, whose enormous library in his palace in Copenhagen at the time of his death contained a number of art treasures as well as a lot of illegal and pornographic literature - all of which he bequeathed to the Royal Danish Library in his will.

Epistle 540: Holberg’s Opera is based on fictional diary notes in which Viscount Thott’s unstoppable appetite for women offers Holberg a commission to write a house opera, which he never completes. However, it drives him into exile for a short period during the winter of 1723.

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Beate Mordal