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Schreker: Das Spielwerk und die Prinzessin

Franz Schreker , Ulrich Windfuhr Audio CD
4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)

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Product Details

  • Conductor: Ulrich Windfuhr
  • Composer: Franz Schreker
  • Audio CD (June 17, 2003)
  • SPARS Code: DDD
  • Number of Discs: 2
  • Label: CPO
  • Run Time: 100 minutes
  • ASIN: B00009LW59
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #267,624 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Disc: 1
1. Das Spielwerk und die Prinzessin, opera: Vorspiel. Seht ihr das Licht?
2. Das Spielwerk und die Prinzessin, opera: Zwischenspiel
3. Das Spielwerk und die Prinzessin, opera: Act 1. Graben-Liese. He, Alter! Florian! Meister!
4. Das Spielwerk und die Prinzessin, opera: Act 1. Der Kastellan. Hier findet ihr nicht, Freund, was ihr sucht'
5. Das Spielwerk und die Prinzessin, opera: Act 1. Spielwerk 1
6. Das Spielwerk und die Prinzessin, opera: Act 1. Meister Florian. Glück auf, mein Bursch...
7. Das Spielwerk und die Prinzessin, opera: Act 1. Der Kastellan. Ja, Freund, ihr habt Glück...
8. Das Spielwerk und die Prinzessin, opera: Act 1. Meister Florian. Tu's, tu's, flieh, Bursch...
9. Das Spielwerk und die Prinzessin, opera: Act 1. Bursch. Sie muß schön sein...
10. Das Spielwerk und die Prinzessin, opera: Act 1. Die Prinzessin. Ich will heut' abend viel Lichter seh'n
See all 11 tracks on this disc
Disc: 2
1. Das Spielwerk und die Prinzessin, opera: Act 2. Einleitung
2. Das Spielwerk und die Prinzessin, opera: Act 2. Bursch. Fest hab' ich geschlafen
3. Das Spielwerk und die Prinzessin, opera: Act 2. Spielwerk 2
4. Das Spielwerk und die Prinzessin, opera: Act 2. Wolf. Was schleppt ihr den Toten da vor das Haus?
5. Das Spielwerk und die Prinzessin, opera: Act 2. Wolf. Ein sauberes Fest!
6. Das Spielwerk und die Prinzessin, opera: Act 2. Zwischenspiel
7. Das Spielwerk und die Prinzessin, opera: Act 2. Pagen. Wir sind voll Sehnen..
8. Das Spielwerk und die Prinzessin, opera: Act 2. Weibliche Stimmen. Tod der Prinzessin!
9. Das Spielwerk und die Prinzessin, opera: Act 2. Spielwerk 3 & Duett. Wir ziehn ins Blaue an hellen Tagen
10. Das Spielwerk und die Prinzessin, opera: Act 2. Prinzessin / Bursch. Doch kommt des Morgens eisig Erwachen

Editorial Reviews


Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
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4.8 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
25 of 28 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A wonderful little hallucination from Schreker... February 14, 2004
Schreker's "Das Spielwerk und der Prinzessin" is a remarkable little opera. Typical of Schreker's operas, it's a wildly imagined fairy tale with lots of weird pseudo-Freudian subtext.
Schreker wrote in an ulta-rich, ambitious, romantic-expressionist idiom--complex both harmonically and orchestrally. Schreker pursued unusual orchestral timbres with great imagination. His music is garish and irridescent.
Schreker seems to glory in his ability to conjure up strangely imagined worlds of magic, romance, sexual depravity, and in the case of "Spielwerk", purification. His characters are often strange blends of earnestness and corruption--in some cases these blends border on being so far from real human experience that they're unsympathetic or dramatically unconvincing. But in "Spielwerk", I think he does a better job than in some other operas, and the language of his librettos (which he always wrote himself) is always beautiful.
The story of "Spielwerk" is downright weird, and can't be explained simply!
In the backstory of "Spielwerk", the old craftsman Master Florian had spent a his lifetime crafting a musicbox that produces music of unearthly beauty, but only came alive when his son played his violin. The Princess who ruled from a nearby castle began holding wild orgiastic parties where she would strip off her robes and "yield" to her male guests. Master Florian's wife, his assistant "Wolf", and his son were all eventually seduced by the parties, where his son, now the Princess's lover, would play the musicbox, driving the revellers to even wilder excesses. So Master Florian renounced his wife, and drove his son from his house out into the world. The music box fell silent.
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A treat June 7, 2009
Another excellent CPO release of a virtually unknown late-romantic opera, and this time they have found their way to a true masterpiece. It is one of Schreker's least performed operas (and Schreker is a composer who is severely under-performed overall), and while not as stirring and gorgeous as Irrelohe or Die Gezeichneten, it is still a must for anyone even remotely interested in this kind of repertoire.

Not well received at its premiere, the opera does indeed suffer from a rather dated libretto (suffused with a kind of psychoanalytic nonsense disconcertingly prescient of the fraudulent inanities of later "philosophers" like Lacan and Derrida). The mixture of symbolism, dreamlike sequences and fairty-tale is however appealing on the face of it, and is an excellent starting point for an evocative sound-world, if one doesn't pay too much attention to the text per se. And the music is indeed utterly fantastic, right from the colorful and dynamically turbulent prelude. Parsifal looms in the background, but Schreker's language is always sufficiently individual to avoid accusations of plagiarism or even eclecticism. True, the sequences of ever wilder and more ecstacic climaxes might be a bit taxing on the ear, and maybe this is in the end one of those operas I cannot actually recommend listening straight through, but there is no doubt that the end result is eminently satisfiable, conjuring up a fantastically enchanting and sumptuous sound-world all of Schreker's own.

Of course, it wouldn't get off the ground were it not for the impressive and committed performances it receives here.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Another Sensual Gem from this Composer December 25, 2012
This is yet another lush, shimmering pscyo-erotic opera by Franz Schreker, wonderfully performed by the forces involved -- I suggest you just read the review of 02/12/04 to get a good summary of the surreal plot. At least one other reviewer has termed it not as a good as the composer's masterpiece, Die Gezeichneten, and while I wouldn't disagree with that judgement, this music drama comes pretty close to matching its sibling, particularly in the second half. Other than Mozart, Bizet's Carmen and a small handful of others, I'm not a great opera fan but Schreker's output in this genre to be absolutely stunning. Highly recommended.
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2 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars a beautiful opera March 7, 2007
Here you have a Schreker master piece. Not as good as the Gezeichneten (this would be impossible), but quite good.

Martin Pitchon
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