<< -- 3 -- Robert Anderson SPIRITUAL JOURNEY
Jürgen Linn as the baritone John utters his own vision throughout, again a
risk demanding a voice of unyielding stamina yet subtlest inflection, which betrayed
at the première not a moment's anxiety. A protracted choral Amen closes his
preliminary words [listen -- No 1, Prologue, 4:32-5:51].
The setting for Martin Torp's oratorio, showing the glorious Annunciation by Veit Stoss. Photo © 2003 Arne Winkler
The opening of the seals are moments of increasing drama. The first displays a
white horse, and a crowned rider who goes forth aconquering
[listen -- No 5, Die ersten 4 Siegel, 0:00-1:18]. With the third seal appears a
black steed, and the horseman holds a pair of scales. The bass soloist, Dariusz Siedlik,
insists on fair prices, while Torp interpolates through an angry chorus a selection
of contemporary ills, such as shortages, inflation, hunger and need
[listen -- No 5, Die ersten 4 Siegel, 4:58-6:25]. The fourth is a pale horse with
Death astride and Hell following after, hinting for Torp at Hitler's Germany.
Their destructive career ends with the meaningless click-clack of an electric
typewriter tapping out nothing at all
[listen -- No 5, Die ersten 4 Siegel, 8:24-9:25].
Copyright © 18 January 2004
Robert Anderson, London UK