Snatched by the Gods (1990) 55'

Opera in One Act

Libretto by: WILLIAM RADICE, after Rabindranath Tagore

Soloist(s): Tr.S.MS.2C.T.HighBar.Bar.2B

Orchestration: 1(pic,afl)1(ca)1(E flat cl)1+cbn/211(T/B)0/2perc/hp/str[]

Commissioned by: the Landeshauptstadt Muenchen for the Muenchener Biennale 1992

Dedicated to: Sir Peter Maxwell Davies

Language: English

Availability: Published by Novello & Co. Ltd., London

First performance: 11 May1992

by the Netherlands Opera, Amsterdam
(De Nederlandse Opera)
with the Asko Ensemble conducted by David Porcelijn,
11 - 14 May 1992 (Amsterdam) and 22 - 24 May (Munich)

Stage Direction by Pierre Audi
Design by Chloe Obolensky
Lighting by Jean Kalman
Dramaturgy by Klaus Bertisch

Composed April 1989 - July 1990, London

The Libretto is based on Tagore's narrative poem Debatar GrasThis work, written at the request of Hans Werner Henze, is the first part of the Double Bill which includes its companion work Broken Strings.

Prize information: Siemens Composition Prize, 1993

". . .a chilling piece, calmly laid out, expertly paced over just 50 minutes." - Rodney Milnes, The Times, 15 July 1996

The climactic storm scene in Snatched by the Gods, 2001, directed by Pierre Audi


1. NETHERLANDS OPERA for the Munich Biennale, Amsterdam and Munich, 1992, dir. Pierre Audi

2. ALMEIDA OPERA London, 1996, dir. David Farnes

3. SCOTTISH OPERA Glasgow and Edinburgh, 1998, dir. Antony MacDonald


5. TRANSPARAANT OPERA Antwerp, Rouen, Rotterdam 2001: Revival of Original Production (Netherlands Opera), dir. Pierre Audi

William Radice (Librettist)