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Classique - Released August 9, 2019 | Ondine

Hi-Res Booklet
Beethoven was really following his heart when he chose to set Goethe's dramas to music. The work is a dream of a utopia of a free humanity; a dream Beethoven had already held up in his opera Fidelio and that reached its culmination in his Ninth Symphony. Written in 1788, Goethe's piece has the Count of Egmont grappling with a despotic Duke, who represents the Spanish invader in Flanders. Arrested, imprisoned and abandoned, he is condemned to death. But his martyrdom turns out to be a victory against absolutism. For Beethoven, this was a goldmine. With great enthusiasm, he sent his score to the poet... And got no response.We are indebted to Herbert von Karajan for this full version of the stage music with soprano Gundula Janowitz, recorded for the great "Édition Beethoven" to mark the bicentenary of the composer's birth in 1970. This new edition, recorded at a concert in Helsinki, is the first "historically accurate" recording, performed on period instruments. It also includes a narrator, in fact the actor, producer and Swiss-German auteur Robert Hunger-Bühler, a member of the Zurich Schauspielhaus.Revolutionary productions of Monteverdi, Handel and the operas of Koželuch have won widespread respect for the Helsinki Chamber Orchestra. Since 2011, its monthly performances have won a vast, new and enthusiastic audience. A visionary selection of repertoires and guest artists has thrilled the public to a degree never seen before with baroque music in Finland. The guest soloists and conductors include Franco Fagioli, Isabelle Faust, Reinhard Goebel, Werner Güra, Erich Höbarth, René Jacobs, Sophie Karthäuser, Julia Lezhneva, Riccardo Minasi, Enrico Onofri, Valer Sabadus, Carolyn Sampson, Skip Sempé and Dmitry Sinkovsky. © François Hudry/Qobuz