Rosie Aldridge, Josefin Feiler, Ida Ränzlöv Headline Staatsoper Stuttgart’s New ‘Hänsel and Gretel’

By David Salazar

Staatsoper Stuttgart is set to premiere a new production of “Hänsel and Gretel” starting on Feb. 6, 2022.

The production will star soprano Rosie Aldridge as the witch with Josefin Feiler and Ida Ränzlöv in the title roles; the roles will be reprised by Natalie Karl, Esther Dierkes, and Diana Haller later in the run. Other cast members include Shigeo Ishino / Christian Miedl as Father, Catriona Smith as Mother, and Claudia Muschio / Laia Vallés as Sandman/Dew Fairy. Alevtina Ioffe conducts.

The opera will be directed by Axel Ranisch who helmed Prokofiev’s “The Love for Three Oranges” with the company.

“For months I struggled to make the wicked witch into a good witch. I thought about whether she could be a trans person who suffers from society’s heteronormativity,” Ranisch stated in an official press statement from the Staatsoper Stuttgart. “But in the end, none of that worked out. The witch therefore remains the evil person, but she acts like a benefactress by handing out delicious drops. In a world where the forests have been burned with nothing left to eat, people courageously seize any opportunity. And during a famine, it would never occur to anyone that the fine sweets might be made from their own children. If you wanted to, you could read a lot into that: deceptive bait offers, the cannibalism of a broken social and economic order.”

“Hänsel and Gretel” will run through April 3, 2022 for a total of eight performances.