Index Page || The Composer Page

ΚΟΝSΤΑΝΤIΝΟS ΡΑLEOLOGOS
"ΤΗΕΥ ΤΟΟΚ ΤΗΕ CITY"
("ΡΙRAN ΤIΝ ΡΟLI")
Musical legend-tragedy in three acts based on the tragedy of Nikos Kazantzakis.
Libretto by Manolis Kalomiris. The lyrics for both The Mothers' Lament and the Song of the Cretans (Act II) are by Manolis Skouloudis.
1961.
 
Cast in order of appearance:
First Night Watchman, Bass
The Palace Sentry, Tenor
Second Night Watchman, Tenor
Third Night Watchman, Tenor
Fourth Night Watchman, Baritone
First Old Man (Protogeros),Bass
Second Old Man, Baritone
Third Old Man, Tenor
Grand Duke Notaras, Bass
Α Young Monk, Soprano
The Lord Karystinos, Baritone
Α Firewalker, Character tenor
Warrior, Bass
Nurse, Mezzo-soprano
Bath Attendant, Comic tenor
Sentry, Baritone
First, Second, Third Witch, 2 Sopranos, 1 Mezzo-soprano
First, Second, Third Astrologer, Bass, Tenor, Soprano
First, Second, Third Monk, 3 Basses
Anna (The Virgin's voice in Act Ι), Soprano
Konstantinos, Tenor
Frantzis, Baritone
Captain Harkoutsis, Baritone
Abbot, Bass
The Voice, Tenor
Celebrant, Tenor
Deacon, Baritone
 
Orchestra: 3 3 4 3 - 8 4 4 1 - Timpani, Percussion, 2 Harps, Celesta,
Xylophone, Carillon, Small Drums, Strings (l6 l4 Ι2 10 8).19
Behind the stage: Glockenspiel, Piano, Tam-tam, Bass drum, Davouli [a type of drum], Oboe d'amore (or English horn), large mixed choir and children's choir.
 
Duration: 2:15'
 
First Performance: 12 August 1962
Herod Atticus Theatre, Athens
National Opera of Greece
Conducted by Andreas Paridis
Directed by Frixos Theologidis
Choir master: Mihalis Vourtsis
Sets and costumes by Yannis Stefanelis
 
Publication:
Full score: Unpublished.
Piano/vocal score: National Opera of Greece, Athens 1961. Copyright by the composer.
Note: From the list of characters at the beginning of the score, the three Astrologers are mistakenly cast for bass, baritone, tenor [rather than bass, tenor, soprano]. Cf. also p. 140.
 
Discography: 
Manolis Kalomiris, Constantine Palaeologus. "They took the City". 
Chadjisimos/Christoyannopoulos/Lalousses/Arape/L.Angelopoulou/Sigalos/ Balatsas/Psychas/Patsalides/Fistouris/Kaloutsa
The Robert Schumann Philharmonic
The Thessalonica Choir
The Thessalonica College Children's Choir
Conducted by Byron Fidetzis
Chorus Master: Mary Konstantinidou
Vocal coaching: Dimitris Yakas
FORMIGX Concerts Company
Live recording of the performance of Constantine Palaeologus in the Macedonian Studies' Society Theatre, Thessalonica, on November 26 and 28, 1997.
"Antis gia Oneiro" ["Instead of a Dream"], Hellenic Culture Organisation – Cultural Olympiad. Works by Greek Composers of the 19th and 20th centuries. A 12-CD collection (CD's No 9&10).
 
Konstantinos Paleologos, full name of Konstatinos XI, last Emperor of the Byzantine Empire. His heroic defence of the city and his death during the siege inspired many legends and folksongs. (See Piran tin Poli, O Marmaronenos Vasilias, The King Who Was Turned into Marble, The Lament of Constantinople, etc.)
[Note by Maria Voelker-Kamarinea]
 
Paleologos [Constantine XI Palaiologos] in English Wikipedia.
 
Kazantzakis, Nikos (1883–1957), a towering figure of international reputation in Greek literature. He initially faced great hostility in Greece for his use of an extreme form of the demotic in his writing, as well as for his political and philosophical beliefs. Kazantzakis travelled extensively throughout Europe and Asia, later writing his impressions. He translated into modern Greek Homer's Iliad, Dante's Divina Commedia, wrote an Odyssey (a sequel to the Homeric one, consisting of some 33,000 lines), drams, epic poetry, novels, etc. Kalomiris used two tragedies of Kazantzakis, the Protomastoras and Konstantinos Paleologos as the subjects of his first and last operas.
[Note by Maria Voelker-Kamarinea]

For detailed information about Kazantzakis' life and work you can visit the website of the Nikos Kazantzakis Museum.

SUMMARY OF THE PLOT
Click here

1453. Constantinople is besieged by the Turks.
 

ACT ONE
At the square in front of the Palace, in Byzantium.

The people are praying to God and to the Virgin Mary, protector of the Greeks, to save Constantinople (City) from the siege. Great Duke Notaras denounces that the wrath of God upon the City is due to the King's alliance with the Franks. Pyrovatis (firewalker), a dreamy seer, foresees the suffering and the loss of the City. A procession is heading to the church of Hagia Sophia. The spirit is temporarily high as the people think that the Virgin Mary in her armour will save the City after the Abbot's supplication. The procession sings the anthem dedicated to the Virgin Mary "To Thee, the Defending Champion Leader" (Ti Ypermaho). Pyrovatis, however, is still foreseeing death.

ACT TWO
Walls and bastions of the City. Gate of Romanus.

Anna, Notaras's daughter, is coming to the City's walls with her maid in search of the King. Her father's hate for Constantine could not change her deep love for him. Constantine also appears with his Frankish allies and the other Lords. Everyone is bidding him farewell and they go into battle. The King stands alone.
The mothers of the City's soldiers enter and beg him to sue for peace. The King tries to encourage them in vain. The mothers leave, saying: "The City will be lost. Master, sue for peace, lest our sons be lost." Anna appears and pleads Constantine to leave together. He refuses. His supreme duty forces him to stay put. Anna then states that she will remain close to him until the end.
Harkoutsis, a Cretan captain, and his comrades –though they know that the battle is lost, as the Franks do not provide any assistance– come to fight and to offer their lives "for the honour" of the City.
The Abbot, as the head of the People, asks Constantine to deliver him the crown, at the order, he claims, of the Virgin Mary. Amid sudden lighting, that make the people believe that the Virgin Mary has come, Constantine convinces the Abbot that there is room for both of them in this fight.

ACT THREE
Inside Hagia Sophia
People mourn and pray while the priest (Celebrant) holds the Divine Liturgy. Pyrovatis, amongst the crowd, envisions the Virgin Mary "...wounded, with sword in hand, Her blonde hair flowing like pennons, with a deep wound on Her cheek". He confuses the vision of the Virgin Mary with that of Anna, who is eventually killed fighting alongside the King.
Harkoutsis, wounded, comes and announces the heroic death of Constantine. A dreadful lament and bitter complaint burst out towards the Virgin Mary who abandoned the City. The liturgy is interrupted. The wall in front of the chancel cracks.
The Abbot's loud voice covers the lament of the crowd. He urges the people to uplift their soul to God by saying "When the time comes, the City will be ours and Yours again, Virgin Mary". The gates of Hagia Sophia are crushed and the Turks rush into the church.

From the Athens Festival programme, 1962.
English translation: George Athanasopoulos and Kostas Rekleitis

 

1971 Athens

Bibliography (Books, Papers, Articles, Notes, etc.)
 
Charkiolakis, Alexandros, Recapitulating the past: Manolis Kalomiris and his opera "Konstantinos Palaiologos" in the International Conference «Between Nostalgia, Utopia and Realities», Department of Musical Studies, University of Belgrade, Belgrade, 14-17 April 2010.
 
Andreou, Konstantinos, Two sides of the same...myth: Manolis Kalomiris' and Nikos Kazantzakis' ideological affiliations, Lecture held at the Department of Greek and Latin languages and cultures, University of Amsterdam, NL, 23 September 2011 Abstract in English here.
ΟΡERΑS

THE MASTER BUILDER
Ο Πρωτομάστορας

THE MOTHER'S RING
Το δαχτυλίδι της Μάνας

SUNRISE
Ανατολή

THE SHADOWY WATERS
Ξωτικά νερά

KONSTANDINOS PALEOLOGOS
(The Fall of Constantinople)

Κωνσταντίνος ο Παλαιολόγος (Πήραν την Πόλη)

WORKS FOR VOICE AND ORCHESTRA

MAGIC HERBS
IAMBS AND ANAPAESTS - PART II
Μαγιοβότανα

THE PEDDLER
Ο Πραματευτής

I LOVE YOU
IAMBS AND ANAPAESTS - PART I
Σ’ αγαπώ

SONGS OF SIKELIANOS
Τραγούδια του Σικελιανού

FIVE SONGS FROM
THE FOURTH BOOK OF

THE CITY AND THE SOLITUDE
Πέντε τραγούδια από το τέταρτο βιβλίο Της πολιτείας και της μοναξιάς

THE TWO TOWNCRIERS
Οι δυο διαλαλητάδες

THE CURSE
Η κατάρα

“HAIDE HOURDE”
Χάιντε Χούρδε

WORKS FOR SOLO PIANO

ORIENTAL PAINTING
Ανατολική ζωγραφιά

THREE BALLADS
Τρεις μπαλάντες

NOCTURNE
Νυχτιάτικο

PATINADA
Πατινάδα

TWO RHAPSODIES
Δύο ραψωδίες

PRELUDES FOR PIANO
Πρελούδια για πιάνο

THE DEATH OF THE VALIANT WOMAN
Ο θάνατος της Αντρειωμένης

ΙΝΤΕΡΜΕΖΖΟ (from the opera SUNRISE)
Ιντερμέδιο (από την όπερα Ανατολή)

PRELUDE (from the MAGIC HERBS)
Πρελούδιο (από τα Μαγιοβότανα)

WORKS FOR TWO PIANOS

PRELUDE AND FUGUE
Πρελούδιο και φούγκα

ROMEIKI SUITE
Ρωμέικη σουίτα

SYMPHONY No. 3, “PALAMIKI” – Third part
Συμφωνία αρ.3 «Παλαμική» – Τρίτο μέρος

MINAS THE REBEL - CORSAIR OF THE AEGEAN
Μηνάς ο Ρέμπελος – Κουρσάρος στο Αιγαίο

PEDAGOGICAL WORKS FOR PIANO

FOR THE GREEK CHILDREN
Για τα ελληνόπουλα

FIRST PIANO LESSONS
Τα πρώτα μαθήματα για πιάνο

INCIDENTAL MUSIC

MUSIC AND MELODRAMA FOR “STELLA VIOLANTI”
Στέλλα Βιολλάντη – Μουσική και Μελόδραμα

SABBATH OF SOULS
Ψυχοσάββατο

PARGA
Η Πάργα

MACBETH
Μάκβεθ

THE SHEPHERDESS’ LOVER
Ο αγαπητικός της βοσκοπούλας

MUSICO-PEDAGOGICAL WORKS

ELEMENTARY THEORY
Στοιχειώδης θεωρία

VOCALISE – ÉTUDE

HARMONY
Αρμονία

MUSICAL FORMS
Μουσική μορφολογία

INSTRUMENTATION
Οργανογνωσία

FIRST PIANO LESSONS
Τα πρώτα μαθήματα για πιάνο

LESSONS IN MUSIC
Μαθήματα μουσικής

MELODIC EXERCISES
Μελωδικαί ασκήσεις

RHYTHMIC EXERCISES
Ρυθμικαί ασκήσεις

HARMONY EXERCISES
Θέματα αρμονίας

WORKS NOT LISTED IN THE MAIN BODY OF THE CATALOGUE
Έργα που δεν αναφέρονται στο κυρίως σώμα του Καταλόγου



Copyright © 2015 Manolis Kalomiris Society. More Info: TERMS OF USE. Contact info.