Athens Concert Hall: Matthias Gerne and Christoph Essenbach in Schubert’s “Winter Journey”

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Matthias Guerne, one of the most distinguished performers of the German lyric today, and the famous pianist and conductor Christoph Essenbach, recorded the record “Winter Journey”, the famous cycle of songs for voice and piano by Franz for the first time in 2014.

Since then, recitals of the two renowned artists have followed in many countries, with audiences and critics praising them for their unparalleled musicality and for their ability to expressively express the wide range of emotions that permeate all 24 songs of this masterpiece. of the great Austrian composer.

The Athens Concert Hall gives the opportunity to the friends of vocal chamber music to enjoy the leading German baritone and the great conductor in the role of pianist, in a unique evening dedicated exclusively to the “Winter Journey” (with Greek subtitles), on Saturday, December 4 20:30. Their appearance in the Dimitris Mitropoulos Hall is part of the “Great Performers” cycle.

In Franz Schubert’s “Winter Journey” (1797-1828) the voice of the poet-lover is expressed through a cycle of narrative songs, the atmosphere of which is reminiscent of that of a great tragic opera or a dramatic theatrical monologue. Both “Winter Journey” and “Nice Mill” had a decisive influence, not only on the style, but also on the technique of composing vocal chamber music in general, a genre that requires from the artist high reserves of interpretive skill, physical endurance. and spiritual concentration.

The vocal and piano song cycle Winterreise (D. 911) was originally written by Franz Schubert for tenor in two parts, each containing 12 lyres. The first section was completed in February 1827 and the second in October of the same year. They were published in January and December 1828, respectively. These are a total of 24 poems by Wilhelm Müller, who died prematurely at the age of 32.

Deep down, this journey of the poet in the winter, as described through the lyrics of the songs, is the wandering of his heart in the streets of loneliness. Betrayed by his beloved, he secretly leaves her house in the middle of the night and leaves the city following the steep banks of the river. The thought of death obsessively haunts his mind, but finally the winter traveler reconciles with his loneliness, walking through the snowy, naked and dark landscape. Besides, the titles of the famous cycle of songs by Schubert are indicative of the psychological states and transitions that the traveler experiences: “Good night”, “The wind vane”, “Frozen tears”, “Unpacking”, “The linden tree”, “Heimarros” “On the river bank”, “Pisokitagma”, “The light that wanders”, “Rest”, “Spring dream”, “Desolation”, “The postman”, “The gray hair”, “The crow”, “Last hope” “,” In the village “,” Morning storm “,” Illusion “,” The road sign “,” The inn “,” Courage “,” False suns “,” The organ player “.

Ticket prices: from 11 to 60 euros.

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