Bruch: Die Loreley

Album cover art for upc 761203700523
Label: CPO
Catalog: 777005-2
Format: CD

Philharmonischer Chor Prag; Campione, Sebastian; Hinterdobler, Magdalena; Mohr, Thomas; Kontora, Danae; Rootering, Jan-Hendrik; Kaune, Michaela; Hamberger, Thomas; Blunier, Stefan; Eder, Benedikt; Münchner Rundfunkorchester

The Loreley is one of the most famous figures of the romantic era, and even today the massive rock in the Rhine is notorious for threatening the river’s skippers with shipwreck. The legendary female figure with her seductive beauty today no longer haunts the river, but her story continues to resonate in the imagination. In 1861, when he was a mere twenty years old, Max Bruch, a Rhinelander born in Cologne, devoted an opera to the Loreley, a work based on a libretto by the great Emanuel Geibel himself. This opera in four acts is only rarely performed and until now has never been recorded on album. The Munich Radio Orchestra will now change this state of affairs: in a concert performance initiated by cpo the orchestra presented the work under the conductor Stefan Blunier, who was the General Music Director of the City of Bonn – that is, in the vicinity of the Loreley – when the recording was produced. The marvelous Michaela Kaune interpreted the title role in a top-quality performance, and Thomas Mohr was her male counterpart. Bruch set the Loreley story, in which everything, both in ambience and action, constituting a “Grand Romantic Opera” (thus the work’s subtitle) is present, in a highly romantic musical language. It is not without reason that Hans Pfitzner lent his support to this forgotten gem throughout his life.

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