For Mortier’s Farewell To Paris, A New Opera By A Painter

For his final project as head of the Paris Opera, and to mark the 20th anniversary of the opening of the Opéra-Bastille, Gérard Mortier commissioned a work from Anselm Kiefer, “who has made his art out of the destruction he saw as a child in southern Germany, when he played happily in the wreckage of his family’s bombed house.” Kiefer created Am Anfang (“In the Beginning”) with 36-year-old composer Jörg Widmann.