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<<  -- 3 --  Robert Anderson    SPIRITUAL JOURNEY

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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 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].

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Copyright © 18 January 2004 Robert Anderson, London UK

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