Documentary of the opera performance Others in Mind, based on Der Kaiser von Atlantis by Viktor Ullmann will be shown. The performance was adapted by the artist Darya von Berner and allows for a musical exploration of the themes of narcissism, exacerbated in the character of dictator Kaiser Overall, the main protagonist, and his journey to self-recognition and to his own death. The beauty of Viktor Ullmann’s opera is, that at the end the Kaiser Overall realizes, that he has to take the others into account and by his own death make space for the ones to come.
Viktor Ullmann wrote Der Kaiser von Atlantis in 1943 under excruciating conditions whilst being imprisoned in the concentration camp of Theresienstadt in the Czech Republic, where he also died. He never saw the opera performed but miraculously managed to save the score.
The piece was performed by French baritone Boris Grappe, currently working at the Opéra National de Paris, accompanied by pianist and conductor Alexander Stessin from the Opera Leipzig. For the performance Grappe embodied the following four different characters: Kaiser Overall, Lautsprecher, Harlequin and Death, in a sort of monologue.