Henze: Der Prinz von Homberg

Arthaus Musik: 100164

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Henze: Der Prinz von Homberg

Catalogue No:

(100 164)






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Henze: Der Prinz von Homberg

William Cochran, Helga Dernesch, Marianne Häggander, Francois Le Roux, Claes-Hakon Ahnsjö, Günther Nöcker

Bayerisches Staatsorchester, Bayerische Staatsoper, Wolfgang Sawallisch, stage direction by Nikolaus Lehnhoff

Recording Date: 1994
Place of recording: A Specially Staged Recording from the Francois Cuvillies Old Residence Theatre, Munich
Running Time: 105 min
Picture Format: 16:9
Sound Format: PCM Stereo
Menu Languages PAL: D, F, GB, SP
Subtitle Languages PAL: D, F, GB, SP

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Gramophone Classical Music Guide


“Der Prinz von Homburg (1958-60) was composed at a time of burgeoning acclaim for Henze. The librettist, Ingeborg Bachmann, fashioned a splendid reduction of Kleist's famous drama of the dreamy aristocrat who, distracted by love into disobeying orders in battle, is given the choice of escaping condemnation if he feels the verdict unjust. Only when he accepts the inevitability of his sentence, and walks out to face execution, is he pardoned.
Henze's crisp and vital music is a remarkable, natural-sounding fusion (controversially for the time) of the influences of Schoenberg and Stravinsky. And Eckhart Schmidt's film is a most faithful record of Lehnhoff's 1994 production.
Le Roux is almost ideal as the lovestruck dreamer Prince, alternately distracted and impetuous. His chemistry with MariAnne Häggander – who sings beautifully – is tangible, essential for a successful production, though it's William Cochran, rich-voiced and expressively stern as the severe but not unbending Elector, who steals the show. Sawallisch directs the Bavarian State Orchestra impeccably, the sound spacious and clear. Der Prinz von Homburg may not be as spectacular as König Hirsch or The Bassarids, or as directly popular as Der junge Lord, but it remains one of Henze's most completely achieved and important operas. Its appearance on DVD (there's no CD equivalent) is unequivocal cause for celebration.”

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