The Passenger is based on the eponymous novel for the Polish writer and survivor of Auschwitz, Zofia Posmycz and the plot concerns a meeting on an ocean liner of a German SS Officer and a survivor from Auschwitz. This is a world premiere recording and this performance directed by David Pountney took place at the Breganzer Festspiele 2010. This is a Blu-ray edition and the booklet includes a libretto. The opera is sung in German, English, French, Russian and Yiddish. Also included is a documentary about Weinberg’s life and Zofia Posmycz’s novel and life.
“[Weinberg's] loud music is very Baba Yar-ish; but in the quieter moments, he's closer to Britten at his sublime simplest...we melt at Svetlana Doneva's mesmerising delivery of Katja's unaccompanied number. The two leads match more-than-acting with top vocal quality...Teodor Currentzis conducts with a focus brilliantly rendered in the Neos sound.”
“Breedt conveys the vulnerability and inconsistency at the centre of Lisa's guilt, while Roberto Sacca projects the vacillation and self-centredness of Walter...Pride of place, though, must go to Elena Kelessidi, whose eloquent portrayal of Martha in all her defiance and anger makes it a role with few equals in post-war opera...The production has been expertly filmed and vividly reproduced for DVD”