Martin - Le Vin Herbe
Label: harmonia mundi
Sandrine Piau, Steve Davislim, Jutta Böhnert, RIAS Kammerchor, Daniel Reuss
A Swiss Tristan Of all people, the sensitive but not particularly emphatic Frank Martin, that ascetic and noble refined mind, turned to a material that had become the epitome of late Romantic emotional art since Richard Wagner had fashioned the material as a universal, yet highly erotic musical drama. The shy hermit from Geneva, a clever border crosser between French and German culture, recalls the genesis of his chamber oratorio In the spring of 1938, I had no major composition in mind, but I was busy with the saga of Tristan and Isolde. At that moment Robert Blum approached me with the request to write a piece of about half an hour for twelve solo voices and some instruments for his madrigal choir. Filled with the thought of Tristan and Isolde, I took up Joseph Bédier's novel again and immediately saw that I could not find a text anywhere that was more in keeping with my intentions. The chapter of the magic potion formed a whole, exactly the length of half an hour that I had allowed myself Some time later, only after the premiere of the Zaubertrank episode in 1940, Martin decided to expand the work into a full-length form on the basis of the two chapters The Forest of Morois and Death, which - abridged and at the same time expanded by other passages from the novel - were to create a plausible, coherent plot framework, flanked by a prologue and epilogue. I thought a longer duration appropriate for this tale of love and death, and it seemed to me inevitable that not only love should be made present in it, but that death should also bring its peace in it, after all the pleasures and anxieties of passion Speaking of passion. Whether consciously or unconsciously, Martin searches for a conceivably decisive demarcation from Wagner, whose ideological appropriation by the rulers of the Third Reich made any connection impossible in any case, for a counter-design to the larger-than-life emotions and musical addictiveness of Green Hill. Here, recourse to Bédier's neo-poetry offered a completely new, literary-historically valid approach, which at the same time contained the possibility of greater narrative distance. For unlike Wagner, whose self-penned, sometimes free adaptation of the Celtic saga was mainly based on the verse poetry of Gottfried of Strasbourg written around 1210, the French Joseph Bédier based his novel, published in 1900, on even older sources and thus achieved a greater proximity to the original legend material Reviews "A rousing performance" FONO FORUM "A stupendous testimony to the abilities of the RIAS Kammerchor" OPERNWELT "A great work, a great recording" WIRTSCHAFTSWOCHE "An event" BAYERISCHER RUNDFUNK "A sensational recording" HESSISCHER RUNDFUNK Reviews M. Stäbler in FonoForum 05 / 07: "For the strong vocal structure, which is strongly vocal and focused on the ensemble Martin has found a very individual and finely spun musical language of beguiling charm: tonal refinement and touching expressivity expressivity become a sensual and subtle mixture on the sensual-subtle mixture, which irresistibly captivates the listener irresistibly captivates the listener. For this are the excellent singers of the RIAS Chamber Choir and the Of the RIAS Chamber Choir and the soloists as well as the members of the of the Scharoun Ensemble: under the direction of Daniel Reuss, they succeed Daniel Reuss, they succeed in giving a stirring performance of the of this masterpiece, which has been criminally neglected in this country."