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Karlheinz Stockhausen: Amour; Wochenkreis; Der kleine Harlekin / Michele Marelli, clarinet & basset horn; Antonio Perez Abellan, synthesizer

Notes & Reviews:

Stockhausen's Amour is a series of five pieces for clarinet based on five short poems written as gifts for women whom the composer was deeply connected to. The most complex and hypnotic of these is Die Schmetterlinge spielen (The Butterflies Playing). In this composition, Stockhausen sets to music the flight of two butterflies, each moving with two different rhythmic meters and speeds. Der kleine Harlekin (The Little Harlequin) is probably the best known of Stockhausen's theatrical works. The clarinetist faces a musically demanding score while wearing a costume and performing a range of dance movements precisely indicated in the score. Wochenkreis (Circle of the Week) is a series of songs describing an initiatory journey from birth to ascension to God, accompanied by the electronic sounds produced by the synthesizer player who has the role of the antagonist Lucifer.

American Record Guide, March/April 2014
On this release, Italian contemporary clarinetist Michele Marelli, a former student of Stephens, presents three of these works: Amour (1976), a musical setting of five poems for unaccompanied clarinet, Der Kleine Harlekin (1977), a ten-minute excerpt from the larger Harlekin (1975) for solo clarinet that requires costume and dance movements in performance, and Wochenkreis (Circle of the Week, 1988) for basset horn and synthesizer, a setting of 'Eve's Song' from the opera Montag aus Licht (Monday from Light, 1988), part of the composer's massive Licht opera cycle (1977-2003). Antonio Perez Abellan, a devotee of Stockhausen and his music, joins Marelli on Wochenkreis. Stockhausen fans will appreciate Marelli's zeal for the composer, attention to score detail, and nice soft playing.


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