Notes & Reviews:
Gramophone Magazine, May 2015
Schirmer and his orchestra bring out the music's warmth, with textures sounding transparent in CPO's natural recording..Eiche may not be the heroic voice that Kunrad seems to call for...but he has the notes and sings eloquently and intelligently. Simone Schneider sounds a touch womanly...but performs with thrilling fearlessness and commitment.
Sunday Times, 26th April 2015
Markus Eiche's priapic Kunrad and Simone Schneider's ecstatic Diemut are the stars of this incendiary performance.
Just in time to celebrate the 150th anniversary of Richard Strauss's birth comes a cpo-released concert performance of his rarely performed 'sung poem' "Feuersnot" (1901) under Ulf Schirmer. The satirist Ernst von Wolzogen, who wrote the libretto for this 'Bavarian burlesque', founded the first literary cabaret in Berlin, the Ueberbrettl, a satiric allusion to Nietzsche's Uebermensch. And in a certain way, Strauss's music is also satirical: it may very much be termed a Wagner parody, a farewell to every sort of pomp and pathos. The comic plot is about the handsome Kunrad, who has a few magical powers but comes on too fast to the mayor's daughter, Diemut, kissing her in public. To avenge the insult, she plays a humiliating trick on him. He strikes back, using his limited magic to prevent the town from making fire for light and heat. Townspeople stop gossiping about the girl's reputation and beg her to accept his advances. When she does, the couple and everyone else are ecstatic.
American Record Guide, July/August 2015
In December 2013 musicologist-conductor Leon Bautzen added to his already impressive Strauss-credentials and penchant for reviving neglected operas with a concert performance of Feuersnot. It was a roaring success. A month later Feuersnot returned to the scene of the crime in Munich, heard here. The orchestra is sensational. The two principals, Schneider and Eiche, roar with ease through their extensive music. They are decently performed. It's Schneider and Eiche's show. Terrific recorded sound helps too. Clocking in at just 89 minutes, the opera is just 9-10 minutes over the normal capacity of a CD. A second CD is necessary. Surely some Strauss extracts could have been rounded up to fill things out. A German and English libretto is included.
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