18. November 2009

Alban Bergs "Wozzeck" erstmalig im Neuen Nationaltheater Tokyo unter Leitung von Hartmut Haenchen, NHK-TV wird die Produktion aufnehmen und im nächsten Jahr senden.

In Koproduktion mit der Bayerischen Staatsoper entstand in der Regie von Andreas Kriegenburg eine eindrucksvolle Produktion, die in Tokyo mit viel Beifall aufgenommen wurde.

Alban Bergs Meisterwerk "Wozzeck" gehört in Tokyo zu den bisher nur in Gastspielen aufgeführten Werken. Hartmut Haenchen dirigierte das Tokyo Philharmonic Orchestra und den Chor des New National Theatre Tokyo. In dem akustisch hervorragenden Opern-Neubau wurde das Werk zum großen Erfolg. In der Titelrolle war Thomas Johannes Mayer Wozzeck. Ihr Debut in dieser Rolle gab Ursula Hesse von den Steinen.
Bis Ende des Monats stehen weitere Vorstellungen auf dem Spielplan.

DIE WELT in einem Bericht vom 27. Januar 2010 vom Musikleben in Tokyo:
"Andreas Kriegenburgs bildmächtiger "Wozzeck" unter Hartmut Haenchen, koproduziert mit der Bayerischen Staatsoper, wurde eben bejubelt." (Manuel Brug)

http://josephsoleary.typepad.com, Januar 2010

The Tokyo Philharmonia Orchestra are new to this demanding score, which must be particularly rewarding because the texture of the writing is so transparent that every note counts and can be clearly heard, and because it is full of interesting solo parts, such as the viola and bassoon cadenzas in the first scene. Hartmut Haenchen, the Dresden-born conductor, declared himself impressed by the proficiency of the players. He rose to the challenge of coordinating the orchestra, the on-stage military band and tango orchestra, the back-stage drums, and the singers who use four different kinds of vocal technique. He kept abreast with the mobility of Berg’s invention. Berg is ‘the master of the tiniest transitions’ (Adorno), and at every moment the music is turning in unexpected directions, always introducing something other, something new, while the tempo constantly shifts. To relax into routine is to lose the thread and court disaster.

This music fuses an outreach to popular culture with mastery of arcane musical structure, much as Mahler had done; indeed Haenchen likes to call Wozzeck ‘Mahler’s 11th Symphony!’ Every note of the score has its deep musical logic, yet subserves drama and characterization. The formal design is extremely rich – for instance there is a passacaglia on a twelve-note theme with 21 variations to characterize the Doctor. Yet the score is also awash with eloquent Wagnerian leitmotifs, and it mischievously quotes Beethoven, Schumann, Mahler and Strauss. It is not a consistently atonal work; there is even a passage in bread-and-butter C major, at the center of the opera, where Wozzeck hands Marie his wages, a fleeting vision of a normal, wholesome world.

The cool, formal aspect of the work, which retains a certain ironic distance from the dramatic action, was perhaps understressed in this performance. The first word of the libretto is ‘slowly,’ and one could have wished for a more contemplative lingering on the musical structure for its own sake as well as for its dramatic function, and for a sharper sense of dialectical tension between the mandarin and the demotic sides of the music. No previous opera demanded such a conjunction of the virtues of the concert hall with those of the opera house. The double challenge was creditably faced in a performance of which all who contributed to it can be proud.