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Music theatre:
Egmont in Iraq

Music theatre: Egmont in Iraq (Baghdad)
Music theatre: Egmont in Iraq (Baghdad) | Photo: Goethe-Institut/Bernhard Ludewig

Egmont in Iraq provides a platform for young artists to artistically explore the past and present ideals of freedom, overcoming violence, and a peaceful future. 

Beethoven's stage music for Goethe's Egmont is a popular piece in the Iraqi National Symphony Orchestra’s repertoire. Nowadays, Iraq’s young generation of performing artists in particular are striving to develop and express their own musical and theatrical idiom. This is the artistic impulse behind Egmont in Iraq, a music theatre piece that puts a new spin on Beethoven's stage music by mixing in influences from New Music and contemporary literature. The piece also works elements of modern life in Iraq into traditional formats. A young contemporary musician and a woman writer, both from Iraq are working on the piece together. This mix serves to create a dialogue between past and present in a work which acclaims, now as in Beethoven’s original two centuries ago, the ideals of freedom, a “farewell to arms”, and a peaceful future. 


  • January 2020

First performance:

  • 5 June 2021: Baghdad