DREAMLIVES is a theatrical exploration of Lieder by Richard Strauss, Berg and Schoenberg that investigates the explosive impact of Sigmund Freud’s ideas on the music of his time. Staged in the manner of a psychoanalytical regression, this critically-acclaimed piece of music theatre was developed to commemorate the 150th anniversary of Freud’s birth in 2006 and premiered at the New End Theatre in Hampstead. DREAMLIVES will also be performed at the Leeds Lieder + Festival in October 2007.


Music: Richard Strauss, Arnold Schoenberg, Alban Berg.

Words: Dahn, von Schack, Hauptmann, Lenau, Storm, Rilke, Schlaf, Hartleben, Hohenberg, von Liliencron, Dehmel, Hart, Aram, Henckell


Julia Sporsen – soprano

Sergey Rybin – piano

Sebastian Harcombe – director

Alex Stone – lighting design


Julia SporsŽn (soprano)

was born in Sweden and studied at the Operastudio67 in Stockholm before moving to London in 2004 to undertake her postgraduate singing studies at the Royal Academy of Music with Joy Mammen. Roles include Arminda La finta giardiniera (Mozart), Armida Rinaldo (Handel), Iphise Dardanus (Rameau)and the title role in Tchaikovsky’s Iolanta, all for RAM Opera, and Violetta for Clonter Opera, Musetta (cover) for Scottish Opera and Donna Elvira for Amersham Music Festival. She has worked with conductors such as Sir Colin Davies, Laurence Cummings and Steuart Bedford and was the winner of the Opera Rara Patric Schimdt Bel Canto Prize in 2007 and the Flora Nielsen Song Prize in 2005. Concert engagements include venues such as the Crush Room, ROH and St. James’s Piccadilly and future plans include Donna Anna for English Touring Opera.


Sergey Rybin (piano)

was born in Siberia, Russia and studied at the specialised music school attached to the Conservatory of Novosibirsk. He continued his studies at the Moscow State University of Culture and Arts, where, having gained the qualifications Professor of Piano and Ph.D., he held a teaching position for four years. Sergey completed his studies at the Royal Academy of Music in London with Malcolm Martineau and Colin Stone, graduating with distinction in 2004 having won several prestigious awards. He has participated in the Britten-Pears Young Artist’s Programme on several occasions and played Stravinsky’s Petrouchka at the Aldeburgh Festival. Recent concert venues include the Wigmore Hall, St John’s Smith Square and St Martin-in-the-fields. Sergey has also worked regularly as a repetiteur – for British Youth Opera (Cosê‘ fan tutte, Romeo and Juliet, La Bohme, Don Giovanni); Birmingham Opera (Ariadne auf Naxos); English Touring Opera (Eugene Onegin) and, most recently, Garsington Opera (Ariadne auf Naxos).


Sebastian Harcombe (director)

was born in the Rhondda Valley, South Wales and read music at London University before changing direction to train as an actor at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art (RADA). Subsequent, extensive work in theatre includes leading roles in Remembrance of Things Past, The Oresteia, Happy Birthday Brecht (Royal National Theatre); Candida, Early Morning, Frankenstein (NT studio on tour); Macbeth, As You Like It, The Learned Ladies (Royal Shakespeare Company); Thyestes, Newton’s Cradle (Royal Court); World Music (Donmar Warehouse); Romeo and Juliet, The White Devil (Lyric Hammersmith); The Woman in Black (West End); The Duchess of Malfi (West Yorkshire Playhouse) and the films Carrington, Blitz, The Tulse Luper Suitcase and Franšois Ozon’s Swimming Pool. Sebastian assisted on Tippett’s The Midsummer Marriage at the Royal Opera House and has directed productions of Rosmersholm, The Maids, Dido and Aeneas/Alceste (Edinburgh Festival), Dreamlives (New End) and La Voix Humaine (Hampstead and Highgate Festival).




Wasserrose (Waterlily) – Strauss/Dahn

Mein Herz ist stumm (My heart is silent) – Strauss/von Schack

Sieben fršhe Lieder (7 early songs)

Nacht (Night) – Berg/Hauptmann

Schilflied (Reed song) – Berg/Lenau

Die Nachtigall (The nightingale) – Berg/Storm

Traumgekršnt (Crowned by dreams) – Berg/Rilke

Im Zimmer (Indoors) – Berg/Schlaf

Liebesode (Lovers’ Ode) – Berg/Hartleben

Sommertage (Summer days) – Berg/Hohenberg

Sehnsucht (Longing) – Strauss/von Liliencron

Erwartung (Expectation) – Schoenberg/Dehmel

“Schenk mir deinen goldenen Kamm”, Jesus bettelt

(‘Give me your golden comb’, begs Jesus) – Schoenberg/Dehmel

Erhebung (Exaltation) – Schoenberg/Dehmel

Traumleben (Dreamlives) – Schoenberg/Hart

Lockung (Seduction) – Schoenberg/Aram

Warnung (Warning) – Schoenberg/Dehmel

Ruhe, meine Seele (Rest, my soul) – Strauss/Henckell

Richard Strauss: 1864 (Munich) – 1949 (Garmisch-Partenkirchen)

Arnold Schoenberg: 1874 (Vienna) – 1951 (Los Angeles)

Alban Berg: 1885 (Vienna) – 1935 (Vienna)

Sigmund Freud: 1856 (Freiberg) – 1939 (Hampstead, London)