• The libretto


    In 1916 Julius Korngold, Erich's father, meets playwright Siegfried Trebisch, that is thinking on adapting Rodenbach's play "Le Mirage". Trebisch confides to Mr. Korngold that it's an excellent material for an opera libretto, and that composers like Puccini or Leo Fall were already interested.

    The Korngolds read the drama and decided to use it for Erich's next opera. They bought the rights to the piece, and hired Hans Müller, that had written the libretto of Violanta to their satisfaction. However, Müller was advancing very slowly, and the Korngolds took over the job, using a pen name to avoid that the many enemies of Julius Korngold, a professional critic of a great influence in Vienna, will attack the opera just to take vengeance.

    Julius also suggested to Erich changing the plot, removing the murder of the young ballerina, and replacing it with an oniric scene. In Julius own words: "Instead of the murder of a woman, a sordid story of madness and moral destitution, it was better to offer an open ending, with Paul starting a new life, and finally going over the death of his wife. This gave also to Erich, a good opportunity to exploit his elegiac vein".

    Erich started immediately to work in the opera. Very soon Marietta's lied was completed, but unfortunately the Great War started, he was mobilized and the opera was stopped for more than one year. During the summer of 1919, with the provisional title of "Das Triumph des Lebens" (The Victory of Life), Erich completed the last scene and started to orchestrate, until August, 1920, when the opera was finally ready.


    This is the best known version of Glück, das mir verblieb, with René Kollo as Paul and Carol Neblett as Marietta:



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