Universal Edition - Wolfgang Rihm – Astralis

Wolfgang Rihm

Wolfgang Rihm

Year of composition: 2001
Subtitle: "Über die Linie" III
Scored for: for small choir, violoncello and timpani
Composer: Wolfgang Rihm
Choir: kleiner Chor
Instrumentation details:

Duration: 25′
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  • Astralis

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Audio Excerpt


World Première

Location: Philharmonie, Kammermusiksaal Berlin / Germany
Date: 23.01.2002
Choir: Rundfunkchor Berlin
Conductor: David Jones
Main Soloists: David Geringas, Vc; qUAdRUM Schlagzeugquartett

Work Introduction

Astralis is a slow meditation on the idea expressed in Novalis’ eponymous poem. The poet (1772-1801) foresaw “a strange, wondrous, shimmering future,” although his vision was a tragic one: “The body dissolved in tears.”

Considering this anticipation of a bleak future, Rihm imagined hymnal music to which the cello adds its voice, alternately singing and weeping. The two timpani remain in the background, their sound scarcely perceptible, mysterious, like faraway thunder.

Translation: Grant Chorley

score - Astralis

  • for small choir, violoncello and timpani
  • Edition type: score

score - Astralis

  • for small choir, violoncello and timpani
  • Edition type: score

1 Ensemble that has played this work:

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