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ORF Vienna Radio Symphony Orchestra|Henze: Das Floß der Medusa (Live)

Henze: Das Floß der Medusa (Live)

ORF Vienna Radio Symphony Orchestra, Sarah Wegener, Dietrich Henschel, Sven-Eric Bechtolf, Cornelius Meister, Arnold Schoenberg Choir and Wiener Sängerknaben

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Das Floß der Medusa (or "The Raft of the Medusa") was a secular oratorio for three singers, choir, children's choir, and orchestra, composed in 1968 by Hans Werner Henze. The story, based on an actual event also commemorated by a famous painting of Théodore Géricault (look it up), dealt with the sinking of a French frigate off Mauritania in 1816. Of the 400 passengers, about 150 were forced onto a makeshift raft, and of those, only 15 survived after 13 days of unthinkable horror. Henze's work dates from 1968, the year of student revolt in Germany as elsewhere; the original choristers refused to sing under a red banner symbolizing Communism, and even baritone Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau backed out, although he was heard on the recording made during rehearsals with Henze conducting. Henze tells his story in classic allegorical fashion with three solo singers: Death (soprano Sarah Wegener), Jean-Charles, a Haitian man on the raft (baritone Dietrich Henschel), and Charon, the ferryman to the world of death (a speaker, Sven-Eric Bechtolf). The speaking part melts into music in a way Schoenberg might have enjoyed, and the Arnold Schoenberg Choir is quite comfortable with the idiom. It may have been newer to the Vienna Boys' Choir, but they also acquit themselves well. The tale was shorn of its "Ho Chi Minh" chants in a later version heard here, and in this reading by the ORF Vienna Radio Symphony Orchestra under Cornelius Meister, it has considerable dramatic power. It is hard not to think of the role shipwrecks and rafts have played in the current European refugee crisis, and Henze's work is much more than a period piece.
© James Manheim /TiVo

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Henze: Das Floß der Medusa (Live)

ORF Vienna Radio Symphony Orchestra

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1
Das Floß der Medusa, Pt. 1: No. 1, Prolog des Charon (Live)
Sven-Eric Bechtolf
00:02:32

Hans Werner Henze, Composer - Ernst Schnabel, Lyricist - Sven-Eric Bechtolf, Narrator, MainArtist - Schott Musikverlag, Mainz, MusicPublisher

2023 Capriccio, 1040 Vienna, Austria 2023 Capriccio, 1040 Vienna, Austria

2
Das Floß der Medusa, Pt. 1: No. 2, Vom Hafen aus lässt sich urteilen über die (Live)
ORF Vienna Radio Symphony Orchestra
00:04:05

Wiener Sängerknaben, Choir, MainArtist - Arnold Schoenberg Choir, Choir, MainArtist - Dietrich Henschel, MainArtist - Hans Werner Henze, Composer - Cornelius Meister, Conductor, MainArtist - Sarah Wegener, MainArtist - Ernst Schnabel, Lyricist - ORF Vienna Radio Symphony Orchestra, Orchestra, MainArtist - Schott Musikverlag, Mainz, MusicPublisher

2023 Capriccio, 1040 Vienna, Austria 2023 Capriccio, 1040 Vienna, Austria

3
Das Floß der Medusa, Pt. 1: No. 3, Vive le roi! (Live)
ORF Vienna Radio Symphony Orchestra
00:01:19

Wiener Sängerknaben, Choir, MainArtist - Arnold Schoenberg Choir, Choir, MainArtist - Hans Werner Henze, Composer - Cornelius Meister, Conductor, MainArtist - Ernst Schnabel, Lyricist - Sven-Eric Bechtolf, Narrator, MainArtist - ORF Vienna Radio Symphony Orchestra, Orchestra, MainArtist - Schott Musikverlag, Mainz, MusicPublisher

2023 Capriccio, 1040 Vienna, Austria 2023 Capriccio, 1040 Vienna, Austria

4
Das Floß der Medusa, Pt. 1: No. 4, Die See war still, der Wind aus Norden wehte angenehm (Live)
ORF Vienna Radio Symphony Orchestra
00:05:59

Wiener Sängerknaben, Choir, MainArtist - Arnold Schoenberg Choir, Choir, MainArtist - Dietrich Henschel, MainArtist - Hans Werner Henze, Composer - Cornelius Meister, Conductor, MainArtist - Sarah Wegener, MainArtist - Ernst Schnabel, Lyricist - Sven-Eric Bechtolf, Narrator, MainArtist - ORF Vienna Radio Symphony Orchestra, Orchestra, MainArtist - Schott Musikverlag, Mainz, MusicPublisher

2023 Capriccio, 1040 Vienna, Austria 2023 Capriccio, 1040 Vienna, Austria

5
Das Floß der Medusa, Pt. 1: No. 5, Den Bänken von Arguin (Live)
ORF Vienna Radio Symphony Orchestra
00:01:39

Hans Werner Henze, Composer - Cornelius Meister, Conductor, MainArtist - Sarah Wegener, MainArtist - Ernst Schnabel, Lyricist - ORF Vienna Radio Symphony Orchestra, Orchestra, MainArtist - Schott Musikverlag, Mainz, MusicPublisher

2023 Capriccio, 1040 Vienna, Austria 2023 Capriccio, 1040 Vienna, Austria

6
Das Floß der Medusa, Pt. 1: No. 6, Drei Tage Kampf um das Schiff (Live)
ORF Vienna Radio Symphony Orchestra
00:03:48

Arnold Schoenberg Choir, Choir, MainArtist - Dietrich Henschel, MainArtist - Hans Werner Henze, Composer - Cornelius Meister, Conductor, MainArtist - Sarah Wegener, MainArtist - Ernst Schnabel, Lyricist - Sven-Eric Bechtolf, Narrator, MainArtist - ORF Vienna Radio Symphony Orchestra, Orchestra, MainArtist - Schott Musikverlag, Mainz, MusicPublisher

2023 Capriccio, 1040 Vienna, Austria 2023 Capriccio, 1040 Vienna, Austria

7
Das Floß der Medusa, Pt. 1: No. 7, Wir standen an der Reling, sah’n ihm zu (Live)
ORF Vienna Radio Symphony Orchestra
00:02:22

Arnold Schoenberg Choir, Choir, MainArtist - Dietrich Henschel, MainArtist - Hans Werner Henze, Composer - Cornelius Meister, Conductor, MainArtist - Ernst Schnabel, Lyricist - Sven-Eric Bechtolf, Narrator, MainArtist - ORF Vienna Radio Symphony Orchestra, Orchestra, MainArtist - Schott Musikverlag, Mainz, MusicPublisher

2023 Capriccio, 1040 Vienna, Austria 2023 Capriccio, 1040 Vienna, Austria

8
Das Floß der Medusa, Pt. 1: No. 8, Wir schauten auf (Live)
ORF Vienna Radio Symphony Orchestra
00:04:09

Wiener Sängerknaben, Choir, MainArtist - Arnold Schoenberg Choir, Choir, MainArtist - Dietrich Henschel, MainArtist - Hans Werner Henze, Composer - Cornelius Meister, Conductor, MainArtist - Sarah Wegener, MainArtist - Ernst Schnabel, Lyricist - ORF Vienna Radio Symphony Orchestra, Orchestra, MainArtist - Schott Musikverlag, Mainz, MusicPublisher

2023 Capriccio, 1040 Vienna, Austria 2023 Capriccio, 1040 Vienna, Austria

9
Das Floß der Medusa, Pt. 1: No. 9, Per correr migliori acque alza le vele (Live)
ORF Vienna Radio Symphony Orchestra
00:07:22

Arnold Schoenberg Choir, Choir, MainArtist - Dietrich Henschel, MainArtist - Hans Werner Henze, Composer - Cornelius Meister, Conductor, MainArtist - Sarah Wegener, MainArtist - Ernst Schnabel, Lyricist - ORF Vienna Radio Symphony Orchestra, Orchestra, MainArtist - Schott Musikverlag, Mainz, MusicPublisher

2023 Capriccio, 1040 Vienna, Austria 2023 Capriccio, 1040 Vienna, Austria

10
Das Floß der Medusa, Pt. 1: No. 10, Es kam der zweite Tag (Live)
ORF Vienna Radio Symphony Orchestra
00:07:16

Arnold Schoenberg Choir, Choir, MainArtist - Dietrich Henschel, MainArtist - Hans Werner Henze, Composer - Cornelius Meister, Conductor, MainArtist - Sarah Wegener, MainArtist - Ernst Schnabel, Lyricist - ORF Vienna Radio Symphony Orchestra, Orchestra, MainArtist - Schott Musikverlag, Mainz, MusicPublisher

2023 Capriccio, 1040 Vienna, Austria 2023 Capriccio, 1040 Vienna, Austria

11
Das Floß der Medusa, Pt. 2: No. 11, Acht Nächte haben den Mond wachsen (Live)
ORF Vienna Radio Symphony Orchestra
00:03:10

Arnold Schoenberg Choir, Choir, MainArtist - Hans Werner Henze, Composer - Cornelius Meister, Conductor, MainArtist - Ernst Schnabel, Lyricist - Sven-Eric Bechtolf, Narrator, MainArtist - ORF Vienna Radio Symphony Orchestra, Orchestra, MainArtist - Schott Musikverlag, Mainz, MusicPublisher

2023 Capriccio, 1040 Vienna, Austria 2023 Capriccio, 1040 Vienna, Austria

12
Das Floß der Medusa, Pt. 2: No. 12, Wie viele Königreiche wissen nichts von uns? (Live)
ORF Vienna Radio Symphony Orchestra
00:02:21

Arnold Schoenberg Choir, Choir, MainArtist - Dietrich Henschel, MainArtist - Hans Werner Henze, Composer - Cornelius Meister, Conductor, MainArtist - Sarah Wegener, MainArtist - Ernst Schnabel, Lyricist - ORF Vienna Radio Symphony Orchestra, Orchestra, MainArtist - Schott Musikverlag, Mainz, MusicPublisher

2023 Capriccio, 1040 Vienna, Austria 2023 Capriccio, 1040 Vienna, Austria

13
Das Floß der Medusa, Pt. 2: No. 13, La luna, quasi a mezza notte tarda (Live)
ORF Vienna Radio Symphony Orchestra
00:07:23

Wiener Sängerknaben, Choir, MainArtist - Arnold Schoenberg Choir, Choir, MainArtist - Dietrich Henschel, MainArtist - Hans Werner Henze, Composer - Cornelius Meister, Conductor, MainArtist - Sarah Wegener, MainArtist - Ernst Schnabel, Lyricist - ORF Vienna Radio Symphony Orchestra, Orchestra, MainArtist - Schott Musikverlag, Mainz, MusicPublisher

2023 Capriccio, 1040 Vienna, Austria 2023 Capriccio, 1040 Vienna, Austria

14
Das Floß der Medusa, Pt. 2: No. 14, Mitternacht (Live)
ORF Vienna Radio Symphony Orchestra
00:02:30

Arnold Schoenberg Choir, Choir, MainArtist - Dietrich Henschel, MainArtist - Hans Werner Henze, Composer - Cornelius Meister, Conductor, MainArtist - Ernst Schnabel, Lyricist - Sven-Eric Bechtolf, MainArtist - ORF Vienna Radio Symphony Orchestra, Orchestra, MainArtist - Schott Musikverlag, Mainz, MusicPublisher

2023 Capriccio, 1040 Vienna, Austria 2023 Capriccio, 1040 Vienna, Austria

15
Das Floß der Medusa, Pt. 2: No. 15, Da ging ein Mann über das Floß (Live)
ORF Vienna Radio Symphony Orchestra
00:06:49

Wiener Sängerknaben, Choir, MainArtist - Arnold Schoenberg Choir, Choir, MainArtist - Dietrich Henschel, MainArtist - Hans Werner Henze, Composer - Cornelius Meister, Conductor, MainArtist - Sarah Wegener, MainArtist - Ernst Schnabel, Lyricist - ORF Vienna Radio Symphony Orchestra, Orchestra, MainArtist - Schott Musikverlag, Mainz, MusicPublisher

2023 Capriccio, 1040 Vienna, Austria 2023 Capriccio, 1040 Vienna, Austria

16
Das Floß der Medusa, Pt. 2: No. 16, Wir haben kein Gesetz (Live)
ORF Vienna Radio Symphony Orchestra
00:03:46

Arnold Schoenberg Choir, Choir, MainArtist - Dietrich Henschel, MainArtist - Hans Werner Henze, Composer - Cornelius Meister, Conductor, MainArtist - Sarah Wegener, MainArtist - Ernst Schnabel, Lyricist - Sven-Eric Bechtolf, Narrator, MainArtist - ORF Vienna Radio Symphony Orchestra, Orchestra, MainArtist - Schott Musikverlag, Mainz, MusicPublisher

2023 Capriccio, 1040 Vienna, Austria 2023 Capriccio, 1040 Vienna, Austria

17
Das Floß der Medusa, Pt. 2: No. 17, Schau auf! (Live)
ORF Vienna Radio Symphony Orchestra
00:07:19

Arnold Schoenberg Choir, Choir, MainArtist - Dietrich Henschel, MainArtist - Hans Werner Henze, Composer - Cornelius Meister, Conductor, MainArtist - Sarah Wegener, MainArtist - Ernst Schnabel, Lyricist - Sven-Eric Bechtolf, Narrator, MainArtist - ORF Vienna Radio Symphony Orchestra, Orchestra, MainArtist - Schott Musikverlag, Mainz, MusicPublisher

2023 Capriccio, 1040 Vienna, Austria 2023 Capriccio, 1040 Vienna, Austria

Albumbeschreibung

Das Floß der Medusa (or "The Raft of the Medusa") was a secular oratorio for three singers, choir, children's choir, and orchestra, composed in 1968 by Hans Werner Henze. The story, based on an actual event also commemorated by a famous painting of Théodore Géricault (look it up), dealt with the sinking of a French frigate off Mauritania in 1816. Of the 400 passengers, about 150 were forced onto a makeshift raft, and of those, only 15 survived after 13 days of unthinkable horror. Henze's work dates from 1968, the year of student revolt in Germany as elsewhere; the original choristers refused to sing under a red banner symbolizing Communism, and even baritone Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau backed out, although he was heard on the recording made during rehearsals with Henze conducting. Henze tells his story in classic allegorical fashion with three solo singers: Death (soprano Sarah Wegener), Jean-Charles, a Haitian man on the raft (baritone Dietrich Henschel), and Charon, the ferryman to the world of death (a speaker, Sven-Eric Bechtolf). The speaking part melts into music in a way Schoenberg might have enjoyed, and the Arnold Schoenberg Choir is quite comfortable with the idiom. It may have been newer to the Vienna Boys' Choir, but they also acquit themselves well. The tale was shorn of its "Ho Chi Minh" chants in a later version heard here, and in this reading by the ORF Vienna Radio Symphony Orchestra under Cornelius Meister, it has considerable dramatic power. It is hard not to think of the role shipwrecks and rafts have played in the current European refugee crisis, and Henze's work is much more than a period piece.
© James Manheim /TiVo

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