“MEET THE ARTIST” meets “THE WEIMAR REPUBLIC &THE NATIONAL SOCIALIST REGIME”
Recorded by the cultural channel Ingolstadt (Dr. Isabella Kreim) and the television broadcaster intv
Pianist: Jan Gerdes
6 November 2014 at Reuchlin-Gymnasium Ingolstadt
These two projects allow me to combine two of my interests.
“MEET THE ARTIST” is a youth work project of the Concert Association Ingolstadt. “The artists who have been invited to Ingolstadt by the Concert Association visit the pupils in their class rooms, perform musical pieces, talk about their everyday life and answer the pupils’ questions.” ( www.konzertverein-ingolstadt.de ) This gives me the opportunity to get teenagers interested in music and theatre and to arouse their interest in something new. Today’s teenagers are the listeners and musicians of tomorrow. For many it will be their first encounter with classical music.
In my days this was different. I attended the classical grammar school Reuchlin Ingolstadt where music education was and is of considerable importance. Therefore, I am particularly delighted that senior teacher Robert Aichner asked me to support his project “THE WEIMAR REPUBLIC & THE NATIONAL SOCIALIST REGIME”. My song recital “OLD HOME - NEW HOME” juxtaposes the works of three artists (Korngold, Strauss and Weill) whose life and work were influenced by this time.
Furthermore, I have a personal motivation. My father Ernst Seiltgen turned 17 at the end of the war. He presented a play about the Nazi era each year during his time as director of the Municipal Theatre Ingolstadt. As a teenager, this annoyed me. Today I increasingly realise that as human beings we do not live in an ahistorical space. We carry the past of our parents and grandparents within ourselves. We should know this history because it affects our lives and weakens and strengthens our potential. It’s only with this knowledge that we can find our way in the globalised world, reinvent ourselves and develop opinions. Let us draw from our wisdom.
Song recital “OLD HOME – NEW HOME”
Songs by Korngold, Strauss und Weill
Pianist: Jan Gerdes
5 November 2014 at the Ingolstadt Concert Association
Kurt Weill (1900–1950), Erich Wolfgang Korngold (1897–1957) and Richard Strauss (1864–1949): three people whose lives and artistic work were heavily influenced by National Socialism and the Second World War.
Weill and Korngold, both of Jewish origin, emigrated to the USA and became very successful. Whilst Korngold returned to “serious” music and hoped for recognition in the “old world” after the war, Weill did not want to be known as a German composer. He had found his new home. His multifaceted music became lighter and more optimistic, mirroring the lifestyle of American society at this time.
Highly regarded and of bourgeois origin, Richard Strauss was already 68 years old when the Nazis seized power. His public role during the Nazi era remains controversial. On the one hand he was president of the Reich Music Chamber and composed music for major events, on the other hand he fell from grace due to his contact with Stefan Zweig and his support of the family of his Jewish daughter-in-law. Up to the time of his opera “Elektra” (1909) he had advanced his music to the limits of tonality. However, he did not pursue this path and turned his opera work towards cheerful and antique subjects. His songs from the early years are a sensitive setting of the world of human emotions. This has also given us the concept of otherworldly “Strauss bliss”.