Synopsis by Nathan Southern
Orginally inspired by Frank Wedekind's plays Pandora's Box (1904) and Earth Spirit (1895), the Alban Berg opera Lulu courted much controversy for its unusually lurid depictions of sex and violence. It tells of the wanton and promiscuous character of the title, a young woman whose self-destructive tendencies and casualness with her own body lead her to a brutal death at the hands of Jack the Ripper. This particular version was mounted for the stage by the Royal Opera House, with minimalist staging by director Christof Loy and a cast that includes Agneta Eichenholz as Lulu, Michael Volle as Jack the Ripper, Klaus Florian Vogt as Alwa and Jennifer Larmore as Countess Geschwitz. The Orchestra of the Royal Opera House lends symphonic accompaniment under the direction of concert master Peter Manning and the baton of maestro Antonio Pappano; Herbert Murauer did the set design; and Eva Mareike Uhlig created the costumes.