Hanjo

Opera in one act (six scenes) by Toshio Hosokawa

Toshio Hosokawa on composing HANJO

»I wrote Hanjo as if it were a dream. The protagonist, Hanako, lives in a world of insanity which lies outside our everyday reality. For a long time she has been waiting for the man she loves. When he finally returns ...

Toshio Hosokawa on composing HANJO

»I wrote Hanjo as if it were a dream. The protagonist, Hanako, lives in a world of insanity which lies outside our everyday reality. For a long time she has been waiting for the man she loves. When he finally returns, she does not recognize him. The picture of this man in her mind has become more real to her than the man standing in front of her.«

  • Conductor
  • Director
    • Calixto Bieito
  • Set Designer
    • Susanne Gschwender
  • Costume Designer
    • Anna Eiermann
  • Light design
    • Reinhard Traub
  • Dramaturgy
    • Xavier Zuber

    • Hanako
      • Ingela Bohlin
    • Jitsuko Honda
      • Ursula Hesse von den Steinen
    • Yoshio

    Sung in English with German surtitles
    1:20 h | no interval
    VORWORT
    Pre-performance lecture, 45 minutes prior to each performance (in German)
    A co-operation with the Ruhrtriennale and the Staatsoper Unter den Linden
    Commissioned by the Festival d’Aix-en-Provence
    • Synopsis

      A young woman, a fan in hand, waits at the station: like yesterday, like the day before, like every day for years now.

      It is Hanako, a Geisha. Several years ago, she fell hopelessly in love with Yoshio, and he in love with her. When they are forced to part, they trade fans with one another, as a promise of their return. But since then Yoshio has disappeared, so Hanako sits and waits patiently for the return of her loved one. Her waiting has distanced her from the world, and she is considered mad.

      Jitsuko, a bitter spinster who has never experienced love, buys Hanako, hides her in her home, and keeps her as the bearer of all her unfulfilled longing for love. In the meantime, an article has been published in the newspaper about the mad Hanako, and Yoshio finally appears at the home of the two women to meet her. A power struggle ensues over Hanako between Jitsuko and Yoshio that ends unexpectedly.