This continues the “Best Recordings of 2010” countdown. You can view the choices so far here. The lists from the previous years: 2009, (2009 – “Almost”), 2008, (2008 - "Almost") 2007, 2006, 2005, 2004.
# 5 - New ReleaseK.A.Hartmann, “Simplicius Simplicissimus' Youth”, Munich RSO / Ulf Schirmer / Nylund, Gerhaher, Volle et al., BR Klassik 900301
|K.A.Hartmann, Simplicius Simplicissimus' Youth, Munich RSO / Ulf Schirmer / Nylund, Gerhaher, Volle et al.|
BR Klassik 900301
“Simplicissimus” (subtitled “Developmental pictures from a German destiny according to H.J.Chr. Grimmelshausen”, with a libretto by Hermann Scherchen and the composer) was written between 1934 and 36 (“an homage to Prokofiev”) and then extensively revised in 1955/56, now dedicated to Carl Orff. It is the original version of the opera that is performed on this recording, but considerably edited and amalgamated for radio broadcasting by composer Wilfried Hiller. Unconnected scenes guide us from Simplicissimus the naïve youth to the wizened fool, shaped by living through the 30 Years War.
The result is a fantastic and uncomfortable, intriguing-compelling 90-minute opera. I don’t enjoy the spoken chorus that follows the overture (pointing to the fact that Germany’s population was decimated by three quarters between 1618 and 1648) but that’s due to the funny pronunciation of “DEUTSCH-land” (German)… the rest is Hartmann’s angular and organic language that someone who thinks highly of Stravinsky’s “Rake’s Progress” and “Histoire du soldat”, or Britten’s operas would have an easy time loving. It helps having two of Germany’s best baritone complement the cast around Camilla Nylund and Will Hartmann; the live recording of the ‘little’ Radio Orchestra in Munich (also part of the Bavarian Broadcasting but not to be mistaken with the flagship BRSO) under Ulf Schirmer is first rate.
# 5 – Reissue
G.Mahler, Symphony No. 10 (vers. Bashai), R.Barshai / German Youth Philharmonic, Brilliant 94040
|G.Mahler, Symphony No.10,|
R.Barshai / German Youth Philharmonic