Gottfried von Einem: Prinz Chocolat

Gottfried von Einem Prinz Chocolat
Prinz Chocolat

Gottfried von Einem: Prinz Chocolat

Opus:
op. 66
Year of composition:
1982/1983
Scored for:
for speaker and chamber orchestra
Composer:
Gottfried von Einem
Text author:
Lotte Ingrisch
Translator:
Susanne Harpner
Soloists:
speaker
Instrumentation details:
1 1 1 1 - 1 1 0 0 - timp, perc - str
Duration:
35’
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Prinz Chocolat
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Work introduction

Gottfried von Einem on the world première in Bern on 1 March 1983:

Prior to the First World War, von Einems in St. Petersburg and Moscow were proprietors of establishments where they served chocolate and patisserie creations which they produced themselves. I, the ignoramus, was told this years ago by Nicolas Nabokov. He gave familiar names to magical pastries; in Tchaikovsky’s Nutcracker ballet, they became figures conjured from von Einem creations.

Seeking fine milk chocolate, Peter Mieg reminded me of Camille Bloch, whose chocolates I had loved since 1937 and then forgotten in the course of all the chaotic events. I renewed my happy acquaintance with them; I have only had comparable pleasure from Demel, Gerbaud and Huguenin.

While Camille Bloch’s chocolates were enchanting my palate, I remembered what Nabokov had told me back then; Tchaikovsky was inspired by the Russian von Einems – I felt inspired by Camille Bloch. Wouldn’t it be lovely to transform my favourite chocolates into music?

Peter Mieg piqued Dr. Rolf Bloch’s interest and I intrigued my wife Lotte Ingrisch. She wrote the fairy tale of the chocolate prince who abducts a little boy from the human world. And where to? – where else but to Chocolatia, whose princess Cric Crac is bewitched. After all sorts of adventures with the Milk Dragon, the dwarf Kirschli [“Little Cherry”], the fairies Bittersweet and Sans Souci, the witches Torino and Ragusa (all of them creations of Camille Bloch), the boy finally reaches the princess in the cherry tree with its roots in the sky – I’ll reveal no more!

Dr. Rolf Bloch commissioned the musical fairy tale; you will be hearing it today in the city where I was born, at Lombachweg 35. May the music whet your appetite for chocolate – and vice-versa!

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World première

Location:
Großer Casinosaal, Bern (CH)
Date:
01.03.1983
Orchestra:
Berner Kammerorchester
Conductor:
Jean-Pierre Moeckli

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