Die Schöne Magelone


Animations for Brahms' song cycle "Die Schöne Magelone". This classical piece is situated in the Middle age and celebrates love in the most romantic possible way. The main protagonist of the story is Count Peter who feels unhappy and restless. He says goodbye to his parents and goes on adventures, meets princess Magelone in Naples, falls in love with her. Then they decide to elope, but they lose each in the woods. Peter ends up captured by pirates who bring him to the Gardens of the Sultan. There he meets Sulima, the daughter of the Sultan, who falls in love with him. He eventually flees and meets Magelone again.

When Liza Ferschtman proposed me to produce an animation for "The Wondrous Love Story of the Beautiful Magelone and Count Peter of Provence" I immediately said yes. After hanging up the phone, I realized I had to produce a very long and complex animation in a short period of time, with lots of characters and different settings.

I could count my blessings, though, as Liza sort of gave me carte blanche. In 3 weeks I produced a 12-minute animation and rehearsed several 'magical' tricks to be conducted by narrator Micha Wertheim. Most drawings are made by hand. There are also many cut-outs and live action fragments between the 2D animations. The final presentation was produced in Keynote and adjusted live to the rhythm of the narration. Sound design was kept to a minimum to avoid any interference with the performance itself.

"Die Schöne Magelone" was represented again in De Bazel in Arnhem in 2013 and in the Opera of San Francisco in 2018. In 2020, it will be represented at 92Y in New York City. See here for more information



The complete animation, as projected on the Delft Chamber Music Festival, with narrator Micha Wertheim, bariton Andre Morsch and pianist Joseph Breinl.