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Manfred, op. 115, Schumann
C: Francesco Angelico
KASSEL: "MANFRED" - a "dramatic poem with music" by Robert Schumann

The Staatstheater Kassel has now given its second symphony concert on the Day of Prayer with this philosophically and musically extraordinary work. It is deep in the black romance and the establishment of the Kassel "Ring" director Markus Dietzfocuses on the surprisingly modern aspect of the loneliness of the individual. Manfred's Faustian features - one feels reminded of Schumann's "Scenen aus Goethes Faust" - are expressed in a self-destructive tendency to forget. Dietz does not emphasize the hero's incestuous love for his sister, which triggered suicide, but in his version of the text makes Astarte a distant lover, the object of an aching longing, but also only an exaggerated mirror and transfigured ideal image of Manfred himself. He feels a guilt that with existence itself and which he tries to master with the help of the elemental spirits and an "Alpenfee" as an incarnation of the romantically exaggerated, sublime nature.Under the precise hands of Francesco Angelico , skilfully guiding the musicthe Kassel orchestra unfolds the expressive beauty of Schumann's ideas. Mendelssohnian light, gloom overcast by basses, longing calls, discreet restraint in the melodramas, sublime simplicity as in an opera by Gluck in the address to Astarte, but also heroic fullness, for example in the introduction to the third "section" of the great poem, are realized with care and a sense of sound. However, the acoustics of the Martinskirche allow only little differentiation; the balance between woodwinds and strings, strangely enough sometimes also a rounded sound of the brass are obviously difficult to optimize. The chorus, on the other hand, sounds in some places from a reverberant approximation, then again powerfully present, but could mix the sound more smoothly. That shouldn'tMarco Zeiser Celesti 's rehearsal, but rather the placement, because in the finale the opposite of the choir (from the gallery) and the orchestra succeeds admirably. As the narrator, Markus Dietz avoids pathetically charging Byron's chosen words. He maintains careful distancing and a measured declamation that pays attention to meaningful references. Meret Engelhardt also follows this line as a speaker and uses a melodious, unforced diction. Schumann gives the soloists Margarethe Fredheim (soprano), Maren Engelhardt (mezzo), Daeju Na (tenor) and Magnus Piontek (bass) roles that are not exactly rewarding. One leaves the concert not only impressed by Schumann's profound music, but also deeply touched by material that shockingly radicalizes the inexpressible longing of Romanticism, as ETA Hoffmann has captured it in literary masterpieces.

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19 November 2021onlinemerker.comWerner Häußner

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