MORTON FELDMAN: Madame Press Died Last Week at Ninety
JOHANNES BRAHMS: Alto Rhapsody op. 53
JOHANNES BRAHMS: Ein deutsches Requiem op. 45
- Conductor Teodor Currentzis
- Choir MusicAeterna Choir
- Soprano Nadezhda Pavlova
- Alto Wiebke Lehmkuhl
- Baritone Dimitris Tiliakos
ABOUT THIS CONCERT
This programme features three works, each a meditation on loss, repose
for those who have passed, and the power of music to console in times of
deep personal anguish. Written in 1869, the Alt Rhapsodie of Johannes
Brahms (1833 – 1897) is a setting of excerpts from Goethe's poem, An Autumn Journey in the Harz Mountains, for alto, male chorus, and orchestra.
Madame Press died last week at ninety, by American composer Morton Feldman (1926 – 1987), is a delicate reflection by the composer on the death of his childhood piano teacher, Vera Maurina-Press. Touching in its simplicity, the motive of a falling third occurs 90 times, once for each year in the life of Madame Press. This piece is scored for a 12-member ensemble of chimes, celeste, cello, double bass, flute, horn, trumpet, trombone, and tuba, and was composed in 1970.
The programme concludes with Ein deutsches Requiem op. 45 of Johannes Brahms, composed between 1865 and 1868. With the omission of violins in the first movement, the programme continues in the beautiful, lower sonority of the two previous works. Differing from the requiem texts of the catholic liturgy, which begins with prayers for the deceased, Ein deutsches Requiem speaks to the living, those who are mourning: "Blessed are they that mourn, for they shall be comforted." (Selig sind, die da Leid tragen.)
Soprano Nadezhda Pavlova, alto Wiebke Lehmkuhl and baritone Dimitris Tiliakos join the Mahler Chamber Orchestra for this programme.