SWR Sinfonieorchester Baden-Baden und Freiburg / Hans Zender
- Wednesday, 9 September 2009
Music makes itself heard when it surprises or outwits our established patterns of perception, or approaches them from an unexpected direction. Mozart made use of this realisation, particularly in his commissioned works and predominantly in his serenades. The Gran Partita is the greatest of these. First it was rewarded with cheers, later, rejected with distant incomprehension.
For Helmut Lachenmann this fundamental insight became the categorical imperative for his composing. The formula of creation that moves his Tanzsuite mit Deutschlandlied originates in Mozartian times. The musical theme which Joseph Haydn elaborately ornaments in his string quartet op. 76,3 was sung as the Emperor’s Hymn, in Austria and later was partly democratised into the Deutschlandlied through the text written by Hoffmann von Fallersleben. Everyone knows it. But do we also find it amidst the dancing shapes and historical mementos within the great breath of Lachenmann’s Suite? We experience it as an effect, as a force that steers the work’s network of time and sound. »The result is as complex as any other pure structure: a landscape of impulses in which one can lose oneself listening, and yet feel as if one is being carried further onward by the law of form. This law of form is that of the Deutschlandlied.«
Helmut Lachenmann is one of those composers who retain a close affinity with Mozart, even though, on first hearing their music it does not sound remotely similar. Six years after the premiere of the Tanzsuite, its dedicatee, Hans Zender – who will now conduct the work for the first time –, »and I were sitting in my car and reverently listened to Mozart’s Gran Partita for winds, astonished about ourselves, and about how, through these sounds, interventions into our hearing are still possible. The work basically stands beyond comparison.« [Helmut Lachenmann]