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Zemlinsky: A Florentine Tragedy, Six Maeterlinck Songs / Jurowski

Zemlinsky / Lang / Wessels
Release Date: 08/12/2014 
Label:  Lpo   Catalog #: 78   Spars Code: DDD 
Composer:  Alexander von Zemlinsky
Performer:  Heike WesselsAlberto DohmenSergei SkorokhodovPetra Lang
Conductor:  Vladimir Jurowski
Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Philharmonic Orchestra
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Length: 1 Hours 14 Mins. 

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Notes and Editorial Reviews

Zemlinsky’s one-act opera A Florentine Tragedy is based on an unfinished play by Oscar Wilde. Set in 16th-century Florence, the opera tells of jealousy, betrayal and ultimately murder, and was described as ‘a splendid work’ by Zemlinsky’s pupil and brother-in-law, Arnold Schoenberg.

Like Strauss’s Der Rosenkavalier, the opera opens with an orchestral depiction of the passion between Bianca and her lover Guido. Their dreamy afterglow glitters like a painting by Zemlinsky’s Viennese contemporary Gustav Klimt – a richly erotic dreamscape, which also suggests the wonderful fabrics, silks and tapestries traded by Bianca’s husband Simone. Mezzo-soprano Petra Lang is the soloist in the rarely performed Six Maeterlinck Songs. One of
Read more the most sought-after performers in the Austro-German song repertoire, Lang captures perfectly the dark foreboding and eerie, dreamlike quality of the songs.

Both works reference Zemlinsky’s unrequited love for Alma Schindler, who eventually chose the international star conductor Mahler as her husband. Zemlinsky never got over this, and when Alma saw A Florentine Tragedy she was furious at what she saw as the depiction of herself, Mahler and her affair with Walter Gropius.

Review of the Florentine Tragedy performance:
"The orchestral playing was faultless, the singing superb. A very fine achievement." (The Guardian)
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Works on This Recording

Eine florentinische Tragödie, Op. 16 by Alexander von Zemlinsky
Performer:  Heike Wessels (), Alberto Dohmen (), Sergei Skorokhodov ()
Conductor:  Vladimir Jurowski
Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1917; Prague, Czech Republ 
Date of Recording: 09/26/2012 
Venue:  Southbank Centre's Royal Festival Hall, 
Gesänge (6), Op. 13 by Alexander von Zemlinsky
Performer:  Petra Lang ()
Conductor:  Vladimir Jurowski
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1910-1913; Vienna, Austria 
Date of Recording: 09/22/2012 
Venue:  Southbank Centre's Royal Festival Hall, 

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