5a. Freundliche Vision: Strauss's Life in Song. Part One: From Cradle to Celebrity
15 October 2022, 11:00 - 12:15
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Throughout his long life, Richard Strauss was the picture of bourgeois ease. Born in Munich, his childhood home was filled with music, thanks to his horn playing father and his mother’s sister, a singer, who would often perform at family gatherings. Her repertoire included Strauss’s very first compositions, setting words by leading Romantics, as well as the poetry of his father’s Bavarian contemporaries. Cutting the apron strings, Strauss’s literary taste developed in richer directions as his songs similarly morphed to reveal a psychological acuity that would pave his way to the stage. When operatic fame arrived, song composition waned. Nonetheless, Strauss would return to Lied in later life, revealing both a sharp tongue and, occasionally, compliance with the Third Reich. But it was during that final chapter that Strauss also rediscovered a more private world, recalling the familial comfort of childhood and the memories of his wife’s soprano voice. Written in the aftermath of World War II, the composer’s last works were acts of contrition that could arguably only find voice in song. Cultural historian Gavin Plumley sets Strauss’s Lied output in the context of his life and times.
Gavin is joined by four exceptional Oxford Lieder Young Artists. They illustrate the event with performances of Strauss songs from the early, famous 'Zueignung' right through to songs from the Four Last Songs.
Between Parts One and Two of this event, soprano Sarah Wegener and pianist Götz Payer give a recital of Strauss songs, not to be missed. Full details here.
All our seating is unreserved; please arrive in good time to take your seat. For groups of more than 10, please phone or email the box office to book your tickets.
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SpeakerGavin Plumley is a writer and broadcaster specializing in the music and culture of Central Europe. He read music at Keble College, Oxford and began his career in the publications and press departments at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden. After working for several years as a theatrical and literary agent, Gavin decided to pursue a freelance career in 2011. He has written features and programme notes for the world’s leading opera houses, concert halls and music festivals, including the Salzburg Festival, for which he has been comm... Read Full Biography
SopranoOriginally from the North of England, soprano Emily Christina Loftus recently graduated with Distinction from the Royal College of Music, London, where she studied with Rosa Mannion and Caroline Dowdle as the Leverhulme Arts Scholar. During her studies, Emily was a Josephine Baker Trust Artist and recipient of The Sir James Caird Travel Scholarship. Emily is a First Class graduate of the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland (2014-2018) where she was a RCS Scholar, studying with Patricia MacMahon. In 2021, Emily performed the role of Pamina for... Read Full Biography
PianistFrom a non-musical background, George Ireland began to play the piano from scratch, self-taught at the age of 14. He is now 27 and enjoys a thriving career, in demand both as a recital partner and as a repetiteur in Opera and Choral music. Graduating with distinction from the Royal College of Music, in both 2020 and 2021 he accompanied the winning recitals at the Kathleen Ferrier Awards, with Jessica Cale and Hugh Cutting respectively. With Jessica Cale he was an Emerging Artist in the 2021 Oxford Lieder Festival, performing Strauss along... Read Full Biography
BaritoneKorean bass singer Wonsick Jonathan Oh possesses an extensive repertoire in both opera and song, having received the Special Prize at the coveted Beijing International Opera Competition (2017). In 2013, Wonsick’s opera career began with the role of Sprecher in Mozart’s Die Zauberflöte. Whilst studying at university, he performed numerous roles including Il Commendatore in Don Giovanni (2014), Don Bartolo in Le Nozze di Figaro (2016), Raimondo in Lucia di Lammermoor (2016), Sarastro in Die Zauberflöte (2018), and Simone ... Read Full Biography
PianistAron Goldin is a British pianist, specialising in the Lieder repertoire. He is studying for a Professional Diploma in Piano Accompaniment at the Royal Academy of Music, where he is a Principal Scholar under the tutelage of Malcolm Martineau and Michael Dussek. Prior to his Professional Diploma, Aron gained a Masters with Distinction in Piano Accompaniment and a Diploma of the Royal Academy of Music (DipRAM). Aron also has a Double First in English Literature from Trinity College, Cambridge, where he was a Senior Scholar. He has been accepted... Read Full Biography
|Seating Area A|
|Full Festival Pass|
|Week 1 Festival Pass (Friday 14 - Saturday 22 inclusive)|
|Seating Area B|
|Full Festival Pass|
This event is part of a series:
The 21st Oxford Lieder Festival, Friendship in Song: An Intimate Art, invites you to explore song as an art form that grew up among friends, often at special and sociable gatherings, and inspired many composers’ most personal and profound works. We explore friendships between composers, poets and performers, recreate the intimate atmosphere of the salon, and generally enjoy a festive sp...