THE BLACK RIDER

The Casting of the Magic Bullets

Music and lyrics by Tom Waits, original direction and stage design by Robert Wilson, original orchestration by Tom Waits and Greg Cohen, based on the book by William S. Burroghs, dramaturgy by Wolfgang Wiens.

Performance rights are held by Felix Bloch Erben Editing House & Co. KG, Berlin

Young Wilhelm falls in love with Käthchen, the huntsman’s daughter. Her father agrees to their marriage only if Wilhelm can make a perfect gunshot. To avoid failure, Wilhelm accepts the magic bullets offered by the devil.  But there is always a price to pay...

The musical fable featuring music by Tom Waits is a demonic and bizarre allegory about the modern man – his alienation, insincerity and relations with evil.

Based on the famous German folk tale “Der Freischütz” and on Weber’s romantic opera, “The Black Rider” is one of the most successful and stubborn musical stage productions of the recent decades. After its acclaimed premiere 1990 in Hamburg it was performed in numerous theatres until the authors withdrew the performance rights. The American publishers have given an exclusive permission to VAT Theatre for the Estonian premiere in the programme of Tallinn 2011 European Capital of Culture. Tom Waits’ music is performed by the legendary Estonian band “Tunnetusüksus” that will reunite especially for this event.  VAT Teater has invited Sandra Üksküla, Lauri Saatpalu and Raivo E. Tamm to join the ensemble for this occasion.

Christian Römer’s previous works in VAT Teater: “God is a DJ” (2001), “Kolumats” (2003) and “Mens’ Hiding Place” (2006). Since 2007 he works as the managing director of Berlin`s Music Theatre Neuköllner Oper.

Smoke machine and strobo are used! Doors will be open at 18.30, we have a cafe.  Please dress warm.

Photographer: Siim Vahur

Duration: 1 h 40 minutes. No intermission.
Premiere: September 8, 2011 in Kultuurikatel as part of the Tallinn 2011 European Capital of Culture programme.


Director: Christian Römer (Germany)
Designer: Kathrin Hegedüsch (Germany)
Video designer: René von der Waar (Germany)
Light designer: Triin Hook
Movement director: Marge Ehrenbusch
Singing teacher: Zoja Hertz
Music is performed by “Tunnetusüksus” with Rivo Laasi, Mart Soo, Tanel Ruben, Eduard Akulin, Mart Süda, Eve Pütsepp.
Performers: Katariina Unt, Sandra Uusberg (Tallinn City Theatre), Lauri Saatpalu, Raivo E. Tamm, Margo Teder, Tanel Saar, Meelis Põdersoo and Ago Soots
Many thanks to Tõnu Oja and Villu Kangur.
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