Aarhus Sommeropera


An operatic ghost story by Andy Pape and Bent Nørgaard based on Iselin Hermann's novel Dampe

Principals: Kristine Becker Lund; Helene Gjerris; Magnus Vigilius; Jens Bruno Hansen; Astrid Kjeldgaard; Louis Mark Pedersen
Director: Bent Nørgaard
Designer: Camilla Bjørnvad
Conductor: David Riddell
The Danish Sinfonietta - Randers Kammerorkester

Emotions play a central role in The Vapours of Love - to love, to desire and to sacrifice oneself for another - emotions which derive from living life to the full, and from the pain of separation from a loved one. A school teacher, fleeing from an illicate relationship with a married woman in Copenhagen, seeks refuge on the remote island of Christiansø. He falls in love with another married woman, but his is life is disturbed by the spirit of Doctor J. J. Dampe, a sort of alter ego, who draws parallels between his own former life and that of the school teacher. The opera is essentially a love-quartet, built on two parallel stories which intertwine with each other, through time and space, thus creating a special multi-layered structure which gives extra depth to the main love story between the fisherwoman Berthe and the school teacher Jacob.

"The music gets an extra compliment, since it is singable thus allowing one to hear and understand the text - and this is exactly what happens. It is therefore natural to compliment the singers here, who, without exception, formed a well-singing team of four adults and two children. The four adult singers blend very well together, and individually each manages to present a distict musical character. The two children have relatively large roles, and as they discover Jacob and Berthe's relationship, Astrid Friborg Kjeldgaard and Louis Mark Pedersen sing their parts well. With this production, Aarhus Sommeropera has reached its 22nd. season. It is really impressive what they have achieved, with a fine blend of traditional operas and modern works. The current artistic director David Riddell conducted with a sure hand, while Randers Chamber Orchestra played with accomplishment." (Jyllandsposten)

"The four singers have fine melodiic lines to work with, and this makes the performance vocally convincing. Jens Bruno Hansen has a dark and dramtic presence as Dr. Dampe, while Helene Gjerris’ portrait of Adolphine's fanaticism for the imprisoned man is presented with full use of her voice's imressive tessitura and expression. Tenor Magnus Vigilius sings well as Jacob, the school teacher running from an illicit affair, and Kristine Becker Lund's fine voice unfolds beautifully in her portrait of Berthe, who wants an affair but will not accept the consequences. David Riddell and Randers Chamber Orchestra perform Andy Pape's music with great conviction, and with fine variation in expression." (Aarhus Stiftstidende)

This production was funded by: Danmarks Nationalbanks Fond, KODA-DRAMTIKs dispositionsfond, Wilhem Hansen Fonden, Knud Højgaards Fond, Tuborgfondet, Århus Stiftstidendes Fond, Aage and Ulla Filtenborg's Fond of 8th November, and BG Fonden.