An hour and a half of theater, audience participation, three stages, a children’s choir, and a dance troupe await the audience at the new double bill of the 40th anniversary rock opera Stephen the King on August 19 at the Budapest Sports Arena.
“It is not a question of Stephen or Koppány, because the audience has already chosen Stephen and Koppány. This bipolarity is a unique source of energy that we should be really proud of, and it is time we became aware of it,” said Péter Novák, the production’s director, at the production’s press conference on Thursday.
The most successful Hungarian rock opera of all time, written by Levente Szörényi and János Bródy, premiered in 1983 on the “King’s Hill” in Budapest’s City Park.
Producer Mária Rosta said at the event that they are trying to create one of the most interesting and certainly the biggest performances of the last forty years.
It will be performed on a thousand square meter stage in the 2,000 square meter arena,”
Rosta added. The production will feature the Hungarian State Opera Children’s Choir, a 120-member dance troupe, and a six-member rock band.
Péter Novák said that Stephen the King is one of the most influential pieces of Hungarian musical theater and part of our national collective consciousness.
The audience will be the main actors of the performance and will sing together, while the action will take place in three places: on the St. Stephen’s stage, Koppány stage and the central stage.
Text author János Bródy recalled that after the premiere many people thought the piece was fantastic.
I said, a little resignedly, that if people still remember it thirty years later, I think we did a good job. Well, forty years have passed.”
According to Levente Szörényi, they hit a nerve, even though the piece merely features clichés that seem to be eternal truths. “The interaction of music and lyrics has led everyone to find in the rock opera what corresponds to their own worldview, and these thoughts and feelings are brought together in the end by the anthem.”
“The piece shows that we all have Stephen and Koppány in us, which is an incredible source of strength for the Hungarian culture, and in the end everyone feels that this is how we are Hungarians together,” added Bródy.
via MTI, Featured image: Facebook/Budapesti Operettszínház