Platée at the Neukölln Opera, Berlin

In a society drifting apart, it is not hard to imagine that the gods have become self centered, conniving, and use their powers to satisfy their own longings rather than feeling obliged to serve the whole and make the world a better place.

You could meet them as people in bars or trendy clubs, intoxicated, and in the middle of sexual excesses in the back rooms of modern luxury hiding places.

And you can meet them in a new production of ‘Platée’, by Jean-Philippe Rameau, at the Neukölln in Berlin. Continue reading

Der Durchzug durchs Rote Meer

Zurich’s First Showing of “Der Durchzug durchs Rote Meer”
by Johann Nepomuk Hummer

Neumünsterkirche Zürich/Schweiz

Johann Nepomuk Hummel. You might only barely be aware of this musician and composer, perhaps because he is not counted as part of the ‘First Viennese School’ despite the fact that he worked during this period, was supported by Mozart and Salieri, and was the successor of Haydn at the Esterházy court. Undeservingly, his clerical works never circulate in concert halls and churches as often as the masses of Mozart or the oratorios of Haydn. Walter Riethmann, of the Cantus Zürich, has adopted a recent ‘excavation’: the only Hummel oratorio, entitled ‘Durchzug durchs Rote Meer’ (The Passage Through the Red Sea), which was written between 1800 and 1810. This piece was never performed during Hummel’s lifetime and lay undiscovered for 100 years, hidden away in the British Library in London until Hermmann Max discovered it in 2007, and later performed it with the Rheinische Kantorei.

Continue reading