Les Siècles

François-Xavier Roth | direction
Patricia Petibon | soprano

After the Russian flavour of the opening to the season, Les Siècles under François-Xavier Roth explore the early Viennese origins of modernity.

Patricia Petibon
Patricia Petibon © Bernard Martinez
François-Xavier Roth
François-Xavier Roth - DR


Schoenberg  Verklärte Nacht
Berg  Sieben frühe Lieder
Mahler  Symphony No. 1


This is a new excursion into modernity for François-Xavier Roth and his musicians in early 20th century Vienna. At the turn of the century, Vienna was the capital of the arts; Klimt and Schiele reigned supreme, Musil and Zweig spearheaded a literary revival, and Freud laid the foundations of modern psychology. Musicians were not to be outdone. Schoenberg, Berg and Webern composed some of the famous works of what would become the Second Viennese School, and Mahler brought a breath of fresh air as director of the city’s opera house. Although Transfigured Night, which dates from 1899, is still a romantic work by Schoenberg, we can already detect the tonality dissolving into a venomous wash of sensuality. Berg composed his Seven Early Songs between 1905 and 1908, but they were not fully scored for orchestra until 1928. This cycle is a sublime lyric gem, illustrating the iconic themes of the genre. In the second half of the concert, we go back in time with Mahler’s Symphony No.1 (1888). Although it is a youthful work, verve, poetry and irony alternate in the build-up to the tumultuous finale. Almost the whole of Mahler is already present in embryo.

Coproduction Théâtre des Champs-Elysées / Les Siècles


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