William Kentridge


A profound resonance of song and drawing conjures up the vista of a solitary winter wayfarer

The melancholic and frozen landscape of Winterreise (Winter Journey) overlaps with the arid terrain of South Africa, the solitude and despair of a wandering young man broken by love paralleling the suffering of black labourers under Apartheid. Twenty-four poems by Wilhelm Müller transcend the distance of time to reverberate powerfully in the present.

Known for his hand-drawn animated films, the South African artist William Kentridge discovered in Franz Schubert’s Winterreise an essential resonance with his own work, from a shuttling between the personal and the universal, the gaze on wanderers and the landscape, and the fragility of emotional bonds. That almost all the film footage laid over these series of Lieder is taken directly from Kentridge’s previous output, without any need to adapt it to fit Schubert’s music, demonstrates the inherent thematic affinity between Kentridge and Winterreise.

The production matches the deep voice of world-class baritone Matthias Goerne with the lucid style of pianist Markus Hinterhäuser, who is also the current Artistic Director of the Salzburg Festival, and the dancer-like physicality of Kentridge’s drawings. This inimitable lineup of talent invites audiences on a journey where they will find their own path.

Festival d’Aix-en-Provence 2014 ©P.Berger/artcomart Festival d’Aix-en-Provence 2014 ©P.Berger/artcomart Festival d’Aix-en-Provence 2014 ©P.Berger/artcomart Festival d’Aix-en-Provence 2014 ©P.Berger/artcomart
Kyoto Art Theater Shunjuza
Performed in German with no surtitles

William Kentridge

William Kentridge (b. 1955) is internationally acclaimed for his drawings, films, theatre and opera productions. Born in Johannesburg, South Africa, his practice is born out of a cross-fertilisation between mediums and genres and responds to the legacies of colonialism and apartheid within the context of South Africa’s socio-political landscape. His aesthetics are drawn from the medium of film’s own history, from stop-motion animation to early special effects. Kentridge’s drawing, specifically the dynamism of an erased and redrawn mark, is an integral part of his expanded animation and filmmaking practice, where the meanings of his films are developed during the process of their making. Kentridge’s work has been seen in museums and galleries around the world since the 1990s. Opera productions include Mozart’s The Magic Flute (2005), Shostakovich’s The Nose (2010), and Alban Berg’s Lulu (2015) and Wozzeck (2017). In 2010, he received the Kyoto Prize. Kentridge’s Winterreise performed by baritone Matthias Goerne and pianist Markus Hinterhaüser will be presented at Kyoto Experiment 2019.


Matthias Goerne

Matthias Goerne is one of the most versatile and internationally sought-after vocalists and a

frequent guest at renowned festivals and concert halls. Born in Weimar, he studied with Hans-Joachim Beyer in Leipzig, and later with Elisabeth Schwarzkopf and Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau. He has collaborated with the world’s leading orchestras, conductors and pianists. He has appeared on the world’s principal opera stages including the Metropolitan Opera in New York and the Vienna State Opera. Goerne’s artistry has been documented on numerous recordings, many of which have received prestigious awards, including four Grammy nominations, an ICMA Award, a Gramophone Award and a Diapason d’or arte. In the 2018/19 season Matthias Goerne is artist-in-residence with the New York Philharmonic. Furthermore, he will appear as Kurwenal (Tristan) at the Paris National Opera, Amfortas (Parsifal) at the Vienna State Opera and will be guest at summer festivals this year in Ravinia, Salzburg and Verbier.


Markus Hinterhäuser

Markus Hinterhäuser was born in La Spezia, Italy. He studied piano at the Vienna University of Music and at the Mozarteum University Salzburg and attended master classes with Elisabeth Leonskaja and Oleg Maisenberg, among others. As a pianist, Markus Hinterhäuser has performed as a soloist and chamber musician at the world’s major concert halls and internationally renowned festivals such as Carnegie Hall, Vienna’s Musikverein and Konzerthaus and La Scala Milan. In recent years Markus Hinterhäuser has focused on the interpretation of contemporary music, in particular of works by Luigi Nono, Karlheinz Stockhausen, Morton Feldman and György Ligeti. Alongside numerous recordings for radio and TV, he has also recorded the complete œuvre for piano by Arnold Schoenberg, Alban Berg and Anton von Webern. Markus Hinterhäuser has repeatedly participated in music drama productions staged by Christoph Marthaler, Johan Simons and Klaus Michael Grüber. As a cultural manager, he was Artistic Director of the Wiener Festwochen from 2014 to 2016 and since October 2016 Artistic Director of the Salzburg Festival.


Stage Direction and Visual CreationWilliam Kentridge
BaritoneMatthias Goerne
PianoMarkus Hinterhäuser
Stage DesignSabine Theunissen
CostumesGreta Goiris
LightingHermann Sorgeloos
Video EditorSnezana Marovic
Video OperationKim Gunning
Stage ManagerSandra Hoffman
Technical and Lighting ManagerChrsitian Lakla
Produced byFestival d’Aix-en-Provence
Coproduced byWiener Festwochen, Holland Festival, Kunstfestspiele Herrenhausen, Niedersächsische Musiktage, Lincoln Center, Les Théâtres de la Ville de Luxembourg, Opéra de Lille
Supported bythe Agency for Cultural Affairs, Government of Japan
Presented byKyoto Performing Arts Center at Kyoto University of Art and Design, Kyoto Experiment