Hans Krása: Brundibár

Hans Krása: Brundibár

by Gerard Schwarz
     
 

Czech composer Hans Krása wrote "Brundibár," a half hour children's opera, for performance at a Prague orphanage, but he was deported to Terezín before its premiere. A copy of the vocal score found its way to Terezín, and Krása reorchestrated it in 1943. The opera received over 50 performances by children in the camp before the composer was transported to Auschwitz…  See more details below

Overview

Czech composer Hans Krása wrote "Brundibár," a half hour children's opera, for performance at a Prague orphanage, but he was deported to Terezín before its premiere. A copy of the vocal score found its way to Terezín, and Krása reorchestrated it in 1943. The opera received over 50 performances by children in the camp before the composer was transported to Auschwitz and killed.

Naxos' recording of "Brundibár" is notable for its use of Tony Kushner's engaging translation of Adolf Hoffmeister's libretto. The opera is performed here with adults in all the principal roles, with the Seattle Northwest Boychoir, and Gerard Schwarz conducting the Music of Remembrance orchestra. The singers approach their roles with disarming simplicity, with none of the mugging and garish sentimentality that can mar performances whose target audience is children. The result is an appealing and direct performance that's both musically and dramatically satisfying. The CD is filled out with Krása's lighthearted "Overture for Small Orchestra," written while he was a prisoner at Terezín, and Lori Laitman's 1996 song cycle "I Never Saw Another Butterfly." Laitman's touching and restrained setting of six poems written by children imprisoned at Terezín is a poignant tribute to the dignity of the children in the camp. Soprano Maureen McKay and clarinetist Laura DeLuca perform the songs with subtlety and intensity.

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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Stephen Eddins
Czech composer Hans Krása wrote "Brundibár," a half hour children's opera, for performance at a Prague orphanage, but he was deported to Terezín before its premiere. A copy of the vocal score found its way to Terezín, and Krása reorchestrated it in 1943. The opera received over 50 performances by children in the camp before the composer was transported to Auschwitz and killed. Koch's recording of "Brundibár" is notable for its use of Tony Kushner's engaging translation of Adolf Hoffmeister's libretto. The opera is performed here with adults in all the principal roles, with the Seattle Northwest Boychoir, and Gerard Schwarz conducting the Music of Remembrance orchestra. The singers approach their roles with disarming simplicity, with none of the mugging and garish sentimentality that can mar performances whose target audience is children. The result is an appealing and direct performance that's both musically and dramatically satisfying. The CD is filled out with Krása's lighthearted "Overture for Small Orchestra," written while he was a prisoner at Terezín, and Lori Laitman's 1996 song cycle "I Never Saw Another Butterfly." Laitman's touching and restrained setting of six poems written by children imprisoned at Terezín is a poignant tribute to the dignity of the children in the camp. Soprano Maureen McKay and clarinetist Laura DeLuca perform the songs with subtlety and intensity.
Raleigh-Durham News & Observer - David Perkins
The text is clear and witty, and Krása's music seems totally fresh, threaded with Austro-Hungarian waltz melodies and rhythms in a rich variety of ensembles, choruses and solos.

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Product Details

Release Date:
12/12/2006
Label:
Naxos
UPC:
0747313011971
catalogNumber:
8570119

Related Subjects

Tracks

  1. Brundibár, children's opera  - Hans Krása  - Adolf Hoffmeister  -  Northwest Boychoir  - Joseph Crnko  -  Music of Remembrance  - Holly Boaz  - Holly Boaz  - Jadd Davis  - Jadd Davis  - Michael Drumheller  - Michael Drumheller  - Ross Hauck  - Ross Hauck  - Auston James  - Auston James  - David Korn  - David Korn  - Maureen McKay  - Maureen McKay  - Jesse Parce  - Jesse Parce  - Morgan Smith  - Morgan Smith  - Evan Woltz  - Evan Woltz
  2. Overture for Small orchestra  - Hans Krása  - Craig Sheppard  -  Music of Remembrance
  3. I Never Saw Another Butterfly  - Lori Laitman  - Franata Bass  - Laura DeLuca  - Pavel Friedmann  -  Bachner  - M. Kosek  - H. Löwy  - Maureen McKay

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