This month, Staatsoper Hamburg presents Die sieben Todsünden in the new version for 15 instrumentalists as part of a revision of their regularly scheduled season, which cannot be performed under social distancing regulations. Directed by Frank Castorf and conducted by Kent Nagano, the Hamburg production takes advantage of the smaller ensemble to present live performances even during the pandemic. This version for 15 players, prepared by HK Gruber and Christian Muthspiel, joins three other available versions一including an arrangement for two pianos and percussion一of one of Weill’s most treasured collaborations with Brecht.
In July, Die sieben Todsünden for 15 players received its first full staging at Staatsoper Freiburg, directed by Kornél Mundruczó and conducted by Ektoras Tartanis. As the Süddeutsche Zeitung reported, “Mundruczó has staged [the actors] so cleverly that they never face each other. COVID-19 droplets, if they should be there, would certainly not have a chance to nest anywhere.”
Other celebrated stage and concert works by Weill are available for smaller ensembles, including Die Dreigroschenoper, Lady in the Dark (reduced orchestration), One Touch of Venus (reduced orchestration), and Concerto for Violin and Wind Orchestra. See a complete list, including audio samples and additional works by Marc Blitzstein.