In Memoriam Günther Passin

Requiem aeternam dona ei.

Mozart’s Requiem, November 9, 2014 at the Pfarrkirche St. Gilgen

How people deal with the death of a loved one becomes a reflection on their life and work.
In the case of the oboist Prof. Günther Passin, deceased in spring of this year, this is reflected in the best interactions of his mourners, and the mourning is led by love and friendship, a deep connection to his attitudes, and by his spirit and work.

Günther exhibited a special kind of spirituality combined with a down to earth outlook on life as a musician of high standing. This is why I am much honored to be a part of the circle performing Mozart’s requiem in his memoriam at his last home in St. Gilgen.

‘Quid sum miser tunc dicturus – What will I say?’ asks the soprano in the Dies irae facing the Last Judgment. He suspects he will not have the chance to ask the question in the crucial moments at the end. A look back at his life leaves him only with the hope to have led a good and happy life. The look forward leaves him only with the braveness to surrender to something of more greatness.

Pie Jesu Domine dona eis requiem, dona nobis pacem. Pious Lord Jesus, give them rest, give us peace.

Mozarts Missa pro defunctis KV 626
November 9, 2014
At the Pfarrkirche St. Gilgen/Wolfgansee.

Start 20:00
Chamber Orchestra M. A. Mozart St. Gilgen,
Choir and Soloists
Conducting: Max Pommer

The Swan on the Spit

About Carmina Burana, New Year’s 2014, great Festspielhaus, Salzburg

“You spend half of your life waiting for nothing.” This saying of one of my colleagues at the Tyrol Festival in Erl, 2012, has stayed with me every time I think of Carmina Burana.

In operas, as in concerts, some tenor parts are an enormous challenge because of their shortness. One example is the ‘singer’ in Strauss’ ‘Rosenkavalier’; another is Carmina Burana’s ‘swan’. To begin with, you sit on the stage for an hour and a half listening to your busy soloist colleagues, the soprano and the baritone. 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.

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