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Lulu in Rome

Posted by Johannes Feigl on 23 May 2017

Alban Berg (c) Universal Edition, ed. Johannes Feigl

Berg’s opera seems an indisputable candidate for the greatest opera of the 20th century. (Philip Hensher, The Guardian, 1 June 2009)

Lulu is the object of desire of all the men in the opera—but she can’t be the woman the men imagine her to be or project onto her. She can never fulfill all the desires of both being the femme fatale and the faithful, quiet wife, just as the men can never be the people that Lulu hopes they will be. And in each case, this impossibility of desire ends in disaster. (William Kentridge, www.metopera.org, 9 October 2015)

William Kentridge’s highly acclaimed production of Alban Berg’s Lulu currently runs at the Teatro dell’Opera di Roma. Alejo Pérez conducts, Agneta Eichenholz sings the title role (on 30 May Dísella Lárusdóttir will play Lulu).

Kentridge created a silent film for the production:

New choral work by David Fennessy in Belfast and Dublin

Belfast; Dublin

Posted by Johannes Feigl on 22 May 2017

Ne reminiscaris

I started to read about people who had been afflicted with extreme amnesiac states, so basically people who had extreme amnesia, loss of memory. One thing that seems to be in common is a kind of state of awakening, a feeling of having woken up from something, maybe a coma or a kind of sense of suddenly being alive. And this kind of feeling really kind of permeates this new piece. (David Fennessy on Ne reminiscaris)

The Chamber Choir Ireland recently talked to David Fennessy about his latest choral composition Ne Reminiscaris, which they premièred this April.

The work will be performed on 23 May in Belfast and on the following day in Dublin as part of Paul Hilliers and the Chamber Choir Irelands “The Great Mystery” tour.

You can watch the interview here:

Rihm’s Piano Concerto No. 2 in Amsterdam

Posted by Johannes Feigl on 18 May 2017

Wolfgang Rihm, Tzimon Barto and Christoph Eschenbach (c) Universal Edition
Wolfgang Rihm, Tzimon Barto and Christoph Eschenbach at the world première of the Piano Concerto No. 2 in 2014

On 20 May Christoph Eschenbach, Tzimon Barto and the Radio Filharmonisch Orkest will present the Dutch première of Wolfgang Rihm’s highly acclaimed Piano Concerto No. 2 at the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam.

View the full study score

The concert will be broadcast live by npo radio 4. Listen live

100th anniversary of Bartók’s Wooden Prince

Posted by Johannes Feigl on 12 May 2017

The Wooden Prince (c) Magyar Állami Operaház

Béla Bartók worked on his The Wooden Prince between 1914 and 1917. Thanks to the perseverance of Italian conductor Egisto Tango, the ballet received its world première on 12 May 1917 – however only on the condition that 30 orchestral rehearsals would be granted. Bartók’s reaction to this: “The fact that he will only take the project on if he is able to prepare it down to the very last detail is the best thing one can hear from a conductor”.

Today, on the day of the 100th anniversary of its world première, Bartók’s The Wooden Prince will be performed by the Hungarian National Ballet.

Find out more on the website of the Hungarian State Opera

A Thai window to Switzerland

Posted by Johannes Feigl on 11 May 2017

Window to Switzerland (c) Thailand Philharmonic Orchestra

In mid-2008, Maria Martin found a previously unnoticed handwritten manuscript by Frank Martin, titled Deuxième Ballade for flute and piano or flute, string orchestra, piano and percussion. This was the composer’s own arrangement of the Ballade for saxophone and string orchestra, piano and percussion, which he had composed for Sigurd Rascher in 1938.

On 12 and 13 May the work will be performed for the very first time in Thailand – by flutist Sebastian Jacot and the Thailand Philharmonic Orchestra (cond. Claude Villaret).

View the event page

Schönberg’s Jakobsleiter in Katowice

Posted by Johannes Feigl on 11 May 2017

Arnold Schönberg, Die Jakobsleiter

ONE WHO IS STRUGGLING

In defiance of old wisdom – spoken,
Written and seen for myself –
All of which seemed banal to me,
I innocently sought happiness.
When it was denied me,
I strove for ‘painlessness’ through renunciation
Which also failed. (Arnold Schönberg, Die Jakobsleiter)

Tomorrow, on 12 May, Arnold Schönberg’s fragmentary oratorio Die Jakobsleiter will be performed by the Polish National Radio Symphony Orchestra (cond. Alexander Liebreich) in Katowice.

Find out more

Ferenc Farkas’ The Magic Cupboard in Budapest

Posted by Johannes Feigl on 09 May 2017

Ferenc Farkas (c) Andras Farkas, ed. Johannes Feigl

“It is beyond all dispute the greatest Hungarian comic opera: sparkling, spirited, stagy.” (György Ligeti on The Magic Cupboard)

Ferenc Farkas’ The Magic Cupboard – "The Arabian Nights meets 20th century Hungarian comic opera in the exotic Orient” –will be performed today and on 11 May by the Hungarian State Opera.

Find out more on their website

Daniel Barenboim opens the 38th International Musikfest

Posted by Johannes Feigl on 08 May 2017

Daniel Barenboim at yesterday’s opening concert of the 38th International Musikfest at the Wiener Konzerthaus – the festival will focus on the oeuvre of Pierre Boulez, in 14 concerts compositions by Boulez will be performed over the next six weeks.

Find out more on the website of the Wiener Konzerthaus.

German première of Stauds Moment, Leute, Moment

Posted by Johannes Feigl on 06 May 2017

Johannes Maria Staud (c) Priska Ketterer

This work was commissioned in memory of 100 Years of the First World War. A short scene from my opera Die Antilope (2013/2014) is taken as the musical starting point. With new, dynamic ideas, this is then developed exponentially in this three-part orchestral work while continually treading a line between swirling orchestral density and an iridescent delicacy that comes close to that of chamber music. (Johannes Maria Staud)

Johannes Maria Staud’s Moment, Leute, Moment will receive its German première on 7 May at the Staatstheater Darmstadt. Will Humburg conducts the Staatsorchester Darmstadt.

View the full score

Fennessy’s Panopticon on Hear and Now

Posted by Johannes Feigl on 04 May 2017

David Fennessy

BBC Radio 3 will broadcast David Fennessy’s Panopticon – recorded at The Queen’s Hall in Edinburgh – on May 6th on Hear and Now. Earlier this year, the composer received a Scottish Award for New Music for the work.

Listen Live

Paul Hillier premières Fennessy

Posted by Johannes Feigl on 28 April 2017

 Cork International Choral FestivalDavid Fennessy’s Ne Reminiscaris – ‘part 2’ to Fennessy’s Letter to Michael – will receive its world première tonight at the Chamber Choir Ireland’s Gala Concert of the Cork International Choral Festival.

Paul Hillier conducts the Chamber Choir Ireland at the St Fin Barre’s Cathedral in Cork.

View the full programme

Darragh Morgan launches new album

Posted by Johannes Feigl on 25 April 2017

Flyer (c) Darragh Morgan

This Saturday, 29 April, Darragh Morgan will be performing Pierre Boulez’ Anthèmes 2 and Steve Reich’s Violin Phase at the launch concert for his new album “For Violin and Electronics”.

The concert takes place at the Iklectik in London.

View the full programme

Arvo Pärt: Composer-in-Residence of the Sächsische Staatskapelle

Posted by Johannes Feigl on 24 April 2017

Arvo Pärt (c) Universal Edition, Eric Marinitsch

The Staatskapelle Dresden has released its 2017/2018 programme: Arvo Pärt will be the new Composer-in-Residence of the Sächsische Staatskapelle. His oeuvre will be featured in several concerts as well as in a special Portrait Concert. 19 works by the Composer-in-Residence will be performed throughout the whole season.

Find out more on the website of the Sächsische Staatskapelle Dresden

Hirta Rounds in South America

Posted by Johannes Feigl on 21 April 2017

MKO (c) Sammy Hart

In 2015 David Fennessy composed Hirta Rounds – a “chamber music for sixteen individual players” – for the Münchener Kammerorchester with the stipulation that it be unconducted.

At the end of April, the Münchener Kammerorchester will be playing the piece in South America: on 24 April at the Teatro Colón in Buenos Aires, on 25 April at the Teatro Solis in Montevideo and on 28 April at the Auditorio Santa Ursula in Lima.

View the full score of Hirta Rounds

 

The Zurich Opera receives a music magazine award for Wozzeck

Posted by Johannes Feigl on 21 April 2017

Wozzeck, Opernhaus Zürich, DVDSingers who normally do this role have bigger voices than I have. But then I decided that it’s a role that doesn’t match any voice perfectly. Some parts are so low that they should be sung by a bass-baritone, others so high that they should be sung by a tenoral baritone. I thought, if Zurich Opera really wants me then they know my abilities, and they will match their ambitions with them. (Christian Gerhaher on Wozzeck)

This grotesque is more real than reality. (Susanne Kübler, Die Welt, 15.09.2015)

A success that gets under your skin. (blick.ch, 14.09.2015)

Congratulations to the Opernhaus Zürich and the whole team behind their critically acclaimed production of Alban Berg’s Wozzeck for receiving a BBC Music Magazine Award. The production features Christian Gerhaher in the title role.

View an excerpt of the DVD here: