13 June 2022


Dutch National Opera & Ballet, Odeonzaal

Running time

90 minutes



Campagnebeeld Der Freischütz

Music dramaturge Kasper van Kooten provides some context and background to the romantic opera classic Der Freischütz.

Carl Maria von Weber’s Der Freischütz met with huge acclaim when it first premiered in 1821 and continued to be a much-loved and very popular opera for the rest of the nineteenth century. With Der Freischütz, Weber introduced German romanticism, mystic forests and enchanting folklore to the opera stage in a haunting tale replete with Faustian overtones. What’s more, his score – especially considering when it was written – is both breathtaking and sensational. In the course of the twentieth century, Der Freischütz gradually disappeared from repertoires in non-German speaking countries, which is why it was rarely performed in the Netherlands. But this is all set to change: Dutch National Opera is now giving audiences an opportunity to enjoy this German masterpiece.

Why is it worth learning more about the genesis of Weber's magnum opus and how it was received? What was Weber’s influence on other composers? Why is this opera relevant and interesting in this day and age? How do we look back on Biedermeier Romanticism, which is so palpable in Der Freischütz? And does this opera really present an idyllic depiction of the social status quo as so many believe?

Music dramaturge Kasper van Kooten, who received his PhD from the University of Amsterdam in 2016 for his work on German-speaking operas and national identity formation in the 19th century, will be addressing these and many other questions.

Practical information

Lecture by music dramaturge Kasper van Kooten to provide background and context to Dutch National Opera’s Der Freischütz.

Date: Mon. 13 June at 20.00
Location: Dutch National Opera & Ballet, Odeonzaal

Admission free, but reservation required.


Dutch National Opera & Ballet regularly collaborates with the Faculty of Humanities at the University of Amsterdam and SPUI25 to organise a series of thought-provoking lectures that are free of charge and can be visited independently of the performances.

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Admission free, but reservation required

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