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Hindemith: Sancta Susanna, etc / Tortelier, BBC Philharmonic

Album Summary

>Hindemith, Paul : Sancta Susanna, opera in 1 act, Op. 21
>Hindemith, Paul : Das Nusch-Nuschi, ballet opera for marionettes in 1 act, Op. 20
>Hindemith, Paul : Tuttifantchen, suite from the incidental music for violin & orchestra
>Hindemith, Paul : Songs (3) for soprano & orchestra, Op. 9
Performers Conductor Ensembles Composer

Notes & Reviews:

"It's hard to imagine a wider variety of music written by one composer over a span of five years than we hear on this disc, and none of it sounds like the Hindemith we know. The young composer was feeling his oats in 1917, in three orchestral songs to expressionist texts...All in all, this is an irresistible disc." -North, Fanfare

Gramophone Classical Music Guide
Sancta Susanna is one of three early stage worksHindemith composed in the wake of the FirstWorld War, its companions being Mörder, Hoffnungder Frauen and Das Nusch-Nuschi, based on aplay for Burmese marionettes and representedhere by its dances. He earned a living at the FrankfurtOpera during this period, so it's natural thathe nurtured operatic ambitions. Sancta Susannaenjoyed a certain notoriety in its day. Fritz Buschrefused to conduct the premiere on account of itsblasphemous plot. It tells briefly of a young nun,Susanna, inflamed by the legend she hears fromSister Clementia, of a girl coming naked to thealtar to embrace the life-size figure of Christ onthe Cross. For this blasphemy she's buried alive.Aroused and undeterred, Susanna strips off andrips the covering from Christ's torso. She's terrifiedwhen a huge spider falls on to her head fromthe crucifix and, horrified by her deed, begs thenuns to wall her up. A drastic cure for arachnophobiaor blasphemy! The opera is short, concentrated,highly imaginative and resourceful in itsuse of sonority; and its expressionist musical languageis so powerful that at the end of its barely 23minutes you feel you've heard a much longerpiece. It's superbly done here. No praise can betoo high for the singers and for the delicacy, eloquenceand power of the playing Tortelier drawsfrom his orchestra. The recorded sound is of demonstrationquality in its unforced naturalness.The gorgeous Straussian Drei Gesänge, Op 9, arevery vehement and passionate, and at times wildlyover the top, but their assured craft and confidentambition is breathtaking. Susan Bullock performsthem with thrilling panache. The dances fromNusch-Nuschi are just as expertly done.



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Works Details

>Hindemith, Paul : Sancta Susanna, opera in 1 act, Op. 21
  • Performers: Susan Bullock (Soprano); Ameral Gunson (Mezzo Soprano); Della Jones (Mezzo Soprano)
  • Conductor: Yan Tortelier
  • Ensemble: Leeds Festival Chorus
  • Notes: New Broadcasting House, Manchester, England (05/07/1997-05/09/1997)
  • Running Time: 22 min. 52 sec.
  • Period Time: Modern
  • Form: Opera/Operetta
  • Written: 1921

>Hindemith, Paul : Das Nusch-Nuschi, ballet opera for marionettes in 1 act, Op. 20 :: Dances
  • Conductor: Yan Tortelier
  • Ensemble: BBC Philharmonic Orchestra
  • Notes: New Broadcasting House, Manchester, England (05/07/1997-05/09/1997)
  • Running Time: 9 min. 21 sec.
  • Period Time: Modern
  • Form: Ballet
  • Written: 1920

>Hindemith, Paul : Tuttifäntchen, suite from the incidental music for violin & orchestra
  • Conductor: Yan Tortelier
  • Ensemble: BBC Philharmonic Orchestra
  • Notes: New Broadcasting House, Manchester, England (05/07/1997-05/09/1997)
  • Running Time: 17 min. 27 sec.
  • Period Time: Modern
  • Written: 1969

>Hindemith, Paul : Songs (3) for soprano & orchestra, Op. 9
  • Performer: Susan Bullock (Soprano)
  • Conductor: Yan Tortelier
  • Ensemble: BBC Philharmonic Orchestra
  • Notes: New Broadcasting House, Manchester, England (05/07/1997-05/09/1997)
  • Running Time: 17 min. 1 sec.
  • Period Time: Modern
  • Written: 1917