R Strauss Die Frau ohne Schatten (excerpts) Zemlinsky A Florentine Tragedy (One-act opera) (sung in German with English surtitles)
Vladimir Jurowski conductor Heike Wessels Bianca Sergei Skorokhodov Guido Bardi Albert Dohmen Simone
Entranced and inspired by Oscar Wilde’s dark, death-ridden play, Alexander Zemlinsky conjured up his most colourful orchestral canvas in the one-act opera A Florentine Tragedy. Puccini claimed Zemlinsky’s most overtly Straussian score was 'a rival to Salome but more human – more real.' The narrative of infidelity and rapprochement wasn’t lost on Zemlinsky’s former lover Alma Schindler, who was outraged when she saw the Vienna première. Zemlinsky might not have found that ever-elusive fame and fortune with his opera, but he poured his all into it, revealing more about the troublesome Alma than any of her former lovers would dare.
Free pre-concert discussion | 6.15pm–6.45pm | Royal Festival Hall A discussion on the music of Zemlinsky with David Trendell, College Organist and Senior Lecturer in Music, King’s College London.