, op. 35, (1929, in czech Matka
) is a quarter-tone
opera in ten scenes by Czech
composer Alois Hába
. It was completed in 1929 on the composer's own libretto, its plot is drawn from author's native Valašsko
. The opera is written in prose.
After Hába successfully resolved instrumental and theoretical problems with quarter-tone system in the twenties, he started to compose fully in that style. His work is bi-chromatic and in some folclore-inspirated scenes and recitative parts of the score Hába approached to the intonational diction of the folk dialect. In spite of the folclore atmosphere of the work, its music is very independent and entirely original. The opera is strongly connected to Moravian ethnic and takes advantage of local dialect and music.
The work was premiered at the Gärtnerplatztheater
in May 1931.
- Křen, the farmer (tenor)
- Maruša, his wife (soprano)
- Francka, one of Křen's children by his first marriage (soprano)
- Nanka,one of Křen's children by his first marriage (mezzosoprano)
- Maruša, one of Křen's children by his first marriage (soprano)
- Francek, one of Křen's children by his first marriage (tenor)
- Vincek (tenor)
- Maruša's father (bass)
- Sister-in-law (soprano)
- Brother-in-law (bass)
- Priest (tenor)
- First lachrymose old woman (soprano)
- Second lachrymose old woman (soprano)
In a poor part of Moravia there lives a small farmer Křen with his numerous family. Hard working Křen toiled his first wife to death and married again. His second wife, Maruša, isn't satisfied with the passion of her husband. With her maternal love she eventually succeeds in breaking the defiant nature of her husband, accustomed to physical work and satisfaction. She gives birth to children and brings them up according to her idea of "God's will". She becomes the fellow-observer of life, for ever regenerating itself, in the similar way as the course of life is conceived by the Christian view of the world.
- Alois Hába: Mother. Prague National Theatre Chorus and Orchestra, cond. Jiří Jirouš, quarter-tone piano Jiří Pokorný. Supraphon 10 8258-2 612
- Vysloužil, Jiří: Hudební slovník pro každého II. Vizovice: Lípa, 1998. ISBN 80-86093-23-9