General information
Title CZStín [auth.]
Subtitle CZbalet o jednom dějství
Title ENThe Shadow
Subtitle ENballet in one act
Title DEDer Schatten
Subtitle DEBallett in einem Aufzug
Title FR
Subtitle FR
CategoryStage Works and Film Music
Halbreich number and suffix102
Parts of composition (movements)
Solo voiceS (za scénou/behind the scene)
List of characters
Diplomatic transcription of dedication
Note on dedication
Place of composition
Year of origin1916
Initiation of composition1916
Finishing of composition12/1916
Last modification of composition
First performance
Date of first performance
Location of first performance
Autograph deposition
InstitutionBohuslav Martinů Centre in Polička
Deposition location
OwnerBohuslav Martinů Centre in Polička
Note on manuscriptSketches also deposited at the Bohuslav Martinů Centre in Polička.
Place of issue
Year of publication
CopyrightSchott Music Panton, Prague
NoteLibretto by Alois Kohout.

The Shadow

The impressionism of Martinů’s Night with a very large orchestra has left no trace in his ballet The Shadow. It is simple, tonal music, skillfully orchestrated; there are the first intimations of Špalicek ("The Chap Book"), and the work is written for chamber orchestra and piano. The score of The Shadow, like its predecessor, is also provided with numerous choreographic notes. Unfortunately, he did not take into account the physical capabilities of the dancer, who never leaves the stage and would literally dance herself to death in imitating the dancing of her shadow, even if the libretto did not prescribe such an end. Martinů discussed the question of a perfor­mance of the ballet personally with Karel Kovařovic, the director of opera at the Prague National Theatre. But it was Otakar Ostrčil, the newly appointed Dramaturgy who returned the work in 1920, on the grounds that it was not suitable for stage performance, though, in fact, there were also other reasons for its rejection.


Miloš Šafránek



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