WOLFGANG RIHM (b.1952): Aria/Ariadne for Soprano and Small Orchestra, ARIBERT REIMANN (b.1936): 3 Gedichte der Sappho for Soprano and 9 Instruments, HANS WERNER HENZE (1926-2012): Nachtstücke und Arien for Soprano and Large Orchestra.

Catalogue Number: 04S071

Label: Wergo

Reference: WER 7360 2

Format: CD

Price: $18.98

Description: Reimann's work is an extended setting of three poems of Sappho, typically exploring themes of love and passion. The music is accordingly heated and passionate, very late-late Romantic and Bergian. Reimann uses instruments whose register is naturally below that of the soprano voice, which serves the dual purpose of allowing the solo line to soar above the accompaniment in long, glowing lines, and when the ensemble ventures into her territory it lends a strained, yearning quality to the sound. Henze's gorgeous nocturnes, framing two poems by his long time collaborator Ingeborg Bachmann, are the very height of Romantic emotionalism, tonal and highly chromatic. They caused great offence at the Donaueschingen Festival in 1957 for being the very opposite of the prevailing trends of the time. Too bad; they represent Henze in his most sumptuously approachable, emotionally expressive idiom. Rihm's Aria/Ariadne (2001) sets Ariadne's Lament from Nietzsche's 'Dionysos-Dithyramben' as an extended dramatic scene. Like many of Rihm's more recent scores, the work clearly derives from the Romantic tradition, both in its constant undercurrents of tonality and its almost operatic emotional intensity. The spirit of Mahler looms large behind this highly expressive work. German texts. Juliane Banse (soprano), Deutsche Radio Philharmonie Saarbrücken Kaiserslautern; Christoph Poppen.

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