WOLFGANG FORTNER (1907-1987): Bluthochzeit.
Catalogue Number: 01P065
Reference: MV 0807 5
Description: Lorca's powerful domestic tragedy of the "Spanish Earth", with its bitter, festering feud between families, passion, betrayal and murder, found its ideal operatic vehicle in Fortner's intense, emotionally expressive setting. The music is dodecaphonic, but Fortner's triumph is that the technical construction never stands in the way of the potent, at times overwhelming, emotions of the narrative. Exquisitely sensitive to the nuances of Lorca's text, Fortner's music is driven by the words, set as spoken and sung parts, most often in a powerfully dramatic, paradoxically lyrical grandly operatic style. Some Spanish elements of melody and instrumentation are ingeniously woven into the music, but make no mistake; this is psychological music-drama in the German tradition at its best. There are obvious resemblances to Berg's operatic masterpieces, and it must be said that Fortner's compelling score, with its atmosphere of decadent hyper-romanticism conveyed through the heightened expressive potential of dodecaphony - newly revolutionary in post-war Germany - does not suffer by the comparison. The production imbues the entire proceedings with a greater or lesser degree of the surreal elements present in Lorca's original, producing an effective atmosphere of 'magical realism'. The filming gives the impression of a live performance shot from whatever multiple camera angles were available, less sophisticated than some recent opera videos, but it follows the important action closely. Dalia Schaechter (mezzo), Banu Böke (soprano), Thomas Laske (baritone), Wuppertal Opera Chorus, Wuppertal Symphony Orchestra; Hilary Griffiths. English subtitles. Stereo. NTSC region 0. 132 min.