Opera Magazin, September 2010
Musically, this Salome rose to most of Strauss’s outrageous demands. Hartmut Haenchen paced the score with precision, making sure that the climaxes and endless uplifts had their desired effect; and he was supported by an ROH orchestra in the best of summer form, with those insinuating woodwind solos always outstanding.
... I barely spared a thought to marking the singers nor attempting objective comment upon the orchestra playing: it was a superb example of Gesamtkunstwerk. And I do recall thinking the orchestra, under Hartmut Haenchen, was splendid. Though I do not consider myself a Straussian, I could go back to this opera again and again.
Hartmut Haenchen dirigált, meggyőzően, és meggyőző volt szinte az egész szereposztás.
Igazán kiugró teljesítmények nem születtek, de gyenge teljesítések sem, így inkább egy névsor álljon itt:...
Hartmut Haenchen am Dirigentenpult interpretiert Strauss’ monströse Partitur überaus durchsichtig und detailliert.
Dr. Rainhard Wiesinger
She is enormously helped by the conducting of Hartmut Haenchen, whose fleet and light touch in this repertoire pays off in making this seem, though it wasn’t, the shortest Salome I’ve ever heard. ...The last dissonant scrunch of the orchestra was impressively noisy and sustained, and had the full measure of the piece.
http://fanaticosdaopera.blogspot.com, 19. Juli 2010
A orquestra da Royal Opera House esteve ao seu melhor nível e proporcionou-nos outra interpretação superior, de cortar a respiração, viva, dramática, dando-nos toda a sumptuosidade tímbrica que faz justiça à música de Strauss. Foi superiormente dirigida pelo maestro Hartmut Haenchen.
There is one part of this production with which I cannot find fault, and that is the wondrous music rising from the orchestra pit. Conducted by Hartmut Haenchen I have rarely heard the Orchestra of the Royal Opera House on such good form, which is really saying something. They were tightly held together, but with fluidity and room to breathe, and no where was this so prominent than during the Dance of the Seven Veils. Just breathtaking.If nothing else, this is a piece of music which I consider to be the composer’s masterpiece, and which is always a joy to hear, particularly when performed by such a brilliant orchestra.
Conductor Hartmut Haenchen matches the action by holding back the brass until the white-knuckle climax. It’s one of those rare operatic nights when everything comes together like a dream.
The glory of all Straussian scores is not just the female voice, but the orchestra. This mighty score was given a superb and beautifully judged account by the Royal Opera House Orchestra under the direction of Hartmut Haenchen. It never ceases to surprise you just how much of this score is decidedly lighter in texture than one would imagine, with Strauss often cosseting the singers, rather than swallowing them in a huge inferno of sound. From the exquisitely brief clarinet introduction, this exotic and middle-eastern tinged score bristled throughout the evening. The heavier passages were semi-blistering and the finale a nervous, twitching pastiche of screaming woodwind. It was a near faultless performance, which made you admire all the more the deft precision of the orchestral players, from the pinched high Bs of the double basses as Salome nervously awaits the execution of Jochanaan, to the virtuoso xylophone played during the “Dance of the Seven Veils”.
The Times, 5.7.2010
..However, it (and much else) is expertly conducted by Hartmut Haenchen, and the Royal Opera orchestra is on rumbustious form all evening.
Dans la fosse, Hartmut Haenchen dirige un orchestre en forme superlative, qui sait rendre avec raffinement la luxuriance de la partition de Strauss.
...Now it returns with Angela Denoke, an even more compelling actress with a far healthier soprano voice. In league with Hartmut Haenchen's pacy conducting she makes you think first, what an incredible score, and only then, what a brilliant production....It's important that the shaggy prisoner's rants do even more to turn Salome's wits than the depraved court around her, and in conjunction with Haenchen's forward propulsion, that was powerfully underlined here, culminating in a truly horrible curse over Salome's recumbent figure.
Haenchen's conducting inspires confidence from the first, spacious clarinet run conjuring the Palestinian night. He whips up a precise storm in the vortexes of frustrated desire, makes sure there are no longueurs in the early stages, as there can be with a less expert pacing, finds funny little rhythmic kinks in the dance and encourages eerie string slides - never more striking than the smeary lines after Salome has kissed the head - as well as bubbling woodwind detail. I've heard more refined accounts, but never one which kept the momentum going better or gave one more cause to marvel at the fact that, 105 years on, Strauss's score has lost none of its power to stun and bewitch.
Uiteraard mag ook het ROH-orkest onder leiding van Hartmut Haenchen niet onvermeld blijven. Haenchen past zich nauwkeurig aan het volume van de zangers aan, waardoor soms wat expressiviteit verloren gaat, maar zeker naarmate de avond vordert, klinken er sublieme passages uit de bak. Met – zoals het hoort – een hoogtepunt aan het einde, als de blazers in volmaakte balans de climax van de slotscène bekronen. Ondanks mijn scepsis kon dát me niet onberoerd laten.
The orchestra is conducted by Harmut Haenchen. Strauss’s score is a wonderful, unforgettable experience. The music, unfailingly dramatic and erotic, is thrilling.
Daily Express, 7.7.2010
the real star of this opera is Richard Strauss's music, conducted with great passion by Hartmut Haenchen. With long and powerful orchestral passages without any singing, and passages of singing with minimal accompaniment, Strauss has a wonderful way of creating a counterpoint between the emotions of the characters and the emotion of the music.
This is what real opera ought to be about, and when the intensity on stage is as great as in this blood-swilling production, it is a marvelous experience.
The whole event swept along by Maestro Haenchen who hit all the dramatic cues.... terrifying, decadent, repulsive and fascinating.
The Guardian, 6.7.2010
In the pit, Hartmut Haenchen is lyrical and refined
The Royal Opera House orchestra played the difficult score well, if not flawlessly, for Hartmut Haenchen, who brought exemplary pace, balance, and the hard-edged discipline demanded by McVicar's unsentimental vision.
Temporada del Covent Garden
.... además de la intensa Salomé de Denoke, convincente en una línea más lírica que la gran Stemme en el Real. Dos grandes maestros –Pappano y Haenchen– cubrieron con creces las expectativas musicales de los aficionados. Dos de las tres atractivas producciones se habían visto ya en Valencia («Figaro» y «Boccanegra»), mientras «Salomé» fue un interesante trabajo traído a tiempos actuales.
José M. IRURZUN
Hartmut Haenchen conducted a sturdy orchestral performance.
Conductor Hartmut Haenchen delivers a riveting account of the score, with the ROH orchestra on searing form.
Deutsche Künstler triumphieren bei «Salome» in London
London (dpa) - Die deutsche Sopranistin Angela Denoke ist bei ihrem ersten Auftritt als Salome in der gleichnamigen Oper von Richard Strauss am Londoner Opernhaus Covent Garden umjubelt worden. Kritiker lobten am Sonntag sowohl die Qualität ihres Gesangs als auch ihre Schauspielkunst. Auch der deutsche Dirigent Hartmut Haenchen wurde am Samstagabend vom Publikum mit stürmischem Beifall gefeiert.
The evening belonged to Angela Denoke in the title role, and Hartmut Haenchen in the pit, who drew a mixture of gentle lyricism and immense power from the orchestra. When Salome sings of kissing the lips on the severed head of the Baptist, the orchestra roars forth, and Ms. Denoke shows a sense of triumphalism rather than necrophilia in her tone and body language.
The performance however was excellent. Johan Reuter sang the Baptist with emotional sincerity, grappling physically with Salome, and in this revival staying upright more than Michael Volle was permitted to do in the 2008 original. Gerhard Siegel was a fine Herod, showing impotence in the face of Salome, the same characteristic he showed as Mime in the face of Siegfried during his performances in the Ring three years ago. Irina Mishura looked gorgeous and sounded suitably imperious as Herodias, and I was particularly impressed by the bass power of Michael Courjal as the First Soldier. But it was Angela Denoke whose singing I found so strikingly good, and though I prefer a little more sexiness in the portrayal of Salome, particularly in the dance, this was a powerfully convincing performance. And then of course there was the huge orchestra, so brilliantly conducted by Hartmut Haenchen.
There's little pillowy exoticism from conductor Hartmut Haenchen either. His brutally realised interpretation is truly modernist, anticipating the flinty edges of Strauss's next and even more daring opera, Elektra. He paces superbly, never overwhelming the singers with the dense orchestration, and holding back enough to unleash the final climax with a terrifying force.
Financial Times, 4.7.2010
The conductor, Hartmut Haenchen, paces the music sweetly
In the pit, Hartmut Haenchen delivered the goods when required, not least in the scrunching anti-apotheosis.
Hartmut Haenchen's experience in modern German repertoire makes his Strauss and disturbing, shaping colours languidly, legato curling like a snake. This was wonderful playing, and made the evening worthwhile. A good musical experience. Great playing, great singiung all round.
And when did you last hear an orchestral performance where truly the loudest sound in the entire evening was the monstrous discord with which Strauss caps the fulfillment of those desires. Hartmut Haenchen nailed that and then some.
... he captured a fine balance between demands of the dance and colouristic fantasy. The orchestra was on fine form after a slight initial thinness of tone, strings gleaming as if instantiating the jewels with which the Tetrarch vainly tries to pay off Herodias’s daughter.