BERND ALOIS ZIMMERMANN (1918-1970): Die Soldaten.
Catalogue Number: 03J091
Reference: WER 6698 2
Description: Zimmermann's powerful opera, laying bare the brutality of humans dehumanized by the military machine, retains its power to shock and disturb after half a century. Its complexity and almost unrelenting confrontational harshness of expression feel a good deal less unprecedented now, of course, but the superbly characterized and tautly dramatic work's real strength remains, in its tense, cumulative psychological drama of disintegrating morals, limned in music of great subtlety and contrast, amidst all the ferocity. Distorted and ironic allusions to jazz and hollow, blaring fanfares unfailingly temper the music's dodecaphonic complexity to bring the nightmare of the characters that much more uncomfortably close to home. 2 CDs. German-English libretto. Original cast recording (mono) of the world premiere production 1965. Edith Gabry (soprano), Liane Synek (mezzo), Anton de Ridder (tenor), Claudio Nicolai (baritone), Zoltan Kelemen (bass), Gürzenich Orchestra Cologne; Michael Gielen.