Opera With Libretto by Novelist Jonathan Safran Foer Will Premiere in Berlin in September

By Emily Quinn
July 25, 2005

Seven Attempted Escapes From Silence, an opera with a libretto by novelist Jonathan Safran Foer, will debut at the Berlin State Opera on September 14.

Foer’s second novel, Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close, was published—to a great deal of media attention—this past April.

Originally, Foer’s libretto was to be set seven times, to seven different scores by seven different composers. “But the more we thought about it,” Foer told the Los Angeles Times, “the more we thought it would be really boring."

The libretto is now divided into seven parts, with seven composers— Miroslav Srnka, Karim Haddad, Bernhard Lang, Catherine Miliken, José Maria Sanchez-Verdú, Annette Schmucki, and Larisa Vrhunc—setting different sections.

According to the Times, the opera is set in an unidentified institution inhabited by people who can’t use language; the work is narrated by a prison guard.