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Bertrand de Billy & Deborah Polaski Paul Dukas: Ariane et Barbe-Bleue (Opera in three Acts) OC 915 2 CD
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Format2 Audio CD
Ordering NumberOC 915
Barcode4260034869158
labelOehmsClassics
Release date01.04.2008
salesrank5255
Players/ContributorsMusicians Composer
  • Dukas, Paul

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      Description hide

      Bertrand De Billy

      Radio-Symphonieorchester Wien · Slovak Philharmonic Choir Choreinstudierung: Blanka Juhanakova
      Deborah Polaski...Ariane
      Jane Henschel...La Nourrice
      Kwangchul Youn...Barbe-Bleue
      Ruxandra Donose...Selysette
      Stella Grigorian...Bellangere
      Ileana Tonka...Ygraine
      Nina Bernsteiner...Melisande
      Ante Jerkunica...Le Vieux Paysan
      Erik Årman...2e Paysan
      Markus Raab...3e Paysan


      On the threshold and sumarization : Paul Dukas’ opera “Ariane et Barbe-Bleue”

      Above all: simply don’t obey.” These words of Ariane could serve as the motto of Paul Dukas’ (1865–1935) opera Ariane et Barbe-Bleue. For when Ariane obeys, then “other laws than his”. This refers to Duke Bluebeard, one of whose wives is Ariane. She in turn got her name from librettist Maurice Maeterlinck: in the original French fairy tale that got into the first edition of Grimm’s Fairy Tales from 1812 via Charles Perrault’s Contes de ma mère l’Oye from 1697, she is unnamed.

      But that’s not all. Compared to other settings of this story, such as Jacques Offenbach’s Barbe Bleue, Béla Bartók’s Bluebeard’s Castle or Franz Hummel’s chamber opera Blaubart, Dukas’ piece places Ariane’s coup in the center of the work. She takes her fate in her own hands and doesn’t let Bluebeard oppress her, despite his threats. In contrast to her predecessors, Ariane rolls up her sleeves and makes something of herself. At the end, however, she is alone: none of the other incarcerated wives wants to follow her to freedom.

      This is discouraging for a number of reasons. On the one hand, Ariane’s fight for freedom stands for the fight of women for equality – and this in 1907: a time when the majority of women were not even allowed to vote. On the other hand, the opera anticipates why the still rampant inequality of the sexes could still be upheld – the lack of objection by the downtrodden.

      It is no wonder that Dukas’ three-act opera was energetically discussed in literary salons after its premiere on May 10, 1907 at the Théâtre de l’Opéra-Comique in Paris. And that Ariane’s magnanimity towards Bluebeard – she lets him live at the end – could also be interpreted as the demand for more “femininity” in politics additionally heated the discussions. Finally, Dukas’ opera was also discussed in homosexual circles, because some of it can be interpreted in a homoerotic light.

      “Oh! Your lips are fresh and your cheeks like children’s cheeks,” rhapsodizes Ariane, when she sees her predecessors. “And here are your naked arms, flexible and warm, and your round shoulders. Here are the flames of your eyes, and here on my hands is the breath of your lips! I do not see what I do; I kiss you all and receive your encircling hands.” Later, Ariane sings to each individual imprisoned wife. One can make of these interpretations what one wants; it is the secretive and highly symbolic libretto itself which enables this.

      The fact that the opera was not able to establish itself may have to do with these various interpretive possibilities. Although it was certainly on the threshold to modern social thinking, it was simply ahead of its time. In addition, Dukas’ family was French-Jewish, which made lasting acceptance of the piece due to the outbreak of National Socialism additionally difficult. Even so, the composition found enthusiastic acceptance from contemporaries. Karol Szymanowski, Ferruccio Busoni and Bruno Walter considered it to be the most important French opera along with Claude Debussy’s Pelleas und Melisande; Arnold Schoenberg, Anton Webern and Alban Berg were also wholeheartedly behind it.

      The work does in fact seem to skillfully summarize central musical tendencies from the beginning of the 20th century. If it seems to be the German style counterpart to Debussy’s Pelleas und Melisande due to its stylistic proximity to Richard Wagner and Richard Strauss, this is only half of the story. In this context, one could begin discussing the origins of Wagner’s and Strauss’ style. The answer can be found in Hector Berlioz’s epochal Treatise on Instrumentation and Orchestration.

      In the 1904 edition, which Richard Strauss supplemented and revised, Strauss notes that Berlioz’ treatise has a “gift of prophecy that lets the attentive reader predict all of Wagner in only a few lines”. This is why Strauss added important Wagner musical examples to the book. A French tradition can also be determined in Dukas’ compositional style – and not only indirectly. The use of certain instrumental sounds and effects occasionally points directly to Berlioz. Impressionistic tendencies can be heard as well.

      Impressionism even shimmers through in Dukas’ most well known piece, the orchestral scherzo L’Apprenti sorcier (“The Sorcerer’s Apprentice”, based on Goethe) from 1897. This demonstrates once again that art is above all a discourse and exchange of ideas. In particular, Dukas’ opera testifies to this, as it presents quasi a balance sheet that summarizes musical tendencies offset by an outlook of what is to come. This makes the work an utterly original link between the late romantic and the modern, whose significance can hardly be underestimated.

      Marco Frei
      Translation: Elizabeth Gahbler


      BERTRAND DE BILLY

      Bertrand de Billy was born in 1965 in Paris and first trained to become an orchestral musician, soon appearing as a conductor. He then decided, however, to seriously study conducting and left Paris as first Kapellmeister and associate music director to go to the Dessau Opera. He then accepted the same position in 1996 in Vienna, a city which has remained the central focus of his activities. De Billy’s international career rapidly developed parallel to this as well.

      Within only several years he debuted at London’s Covent Garden, the Berlin, Hamburg and Munich State Operas, Brussel’s La Monnaie and the Paris Opéra Bastille.

      In 1997, he appeared for the first time at both the Vienna State Opera and the New York Met – and has remained closely linked to both houses ever since. In 1999, Bertrand de Billy was appointed as Music Director of the rebuilt Teatro Liceu in Barcelona and shaped the traditional house with his musical groundwork till the present day. He performed a Mozart cycle during the five years of his stay there, but above all, Wagner’s Ring des Nibelungen with a cast of international stars, directed by Harry Kupfer, as well as Tristan und Isolde. Both were a great personal triumph for Bertrand de Billy. In 2004, he left Barcelona to dedicate himself fully to his newest task, one which he had started in 2002: as Music Director of the Vienna RSO, he developed the orchestra into a flexible, highly admired instrument that performs music ranging from Mozart operas to important world premieres of contemporary music with effortless stylistic mastery and an internationally famed sound quality. In addition to its regular series in Vienna concert halls, the RSO also appears as an opera orchestra in the Theater an der Wien, a development that de Billy decisively promoted well before his appointment as guest conductor.

      In summer 2002 he debuted with Mozart’s Zauberflöte with the Vienna Philharmonic at the Salzburg Festival and since then conducts his own orchestra in programs that reflect the whole range of his abilities.

      Bertrand de Billy’s work is documented on numerous CDs (almost all released by OehmsClassics) and DVDs.

      RSO Wien · Viena RSO

      The Vienna Radio Symphony Orchestra (Vienna RSO) was founded in 1969 as an offshoot of the Austrian Radio Broadcasting Company’s large orchestra. Since then, it has profiled itself as one of the most diverse orchestras in Austria, focusing primarily on the performance of contemporary music. Under its principle conductors Milan Horvat, Leif Segerstam, Lothar Zagrosek, Pinchas Steinberg and Dennis Russell Davies, however, the Vienna RSO has broadened its repertoire, which now ranges from the pre-classic to the avant-garde. Bertrand de Billy’s tenure as the Vienna RSO’s principle conductor began on September 1, 2002.

      In addition to its own concert series in the Musikverein and Konzerthaus in Vienna, the orchestra regularly appears at major festivals in and outside of Austria. It maintains especially close ties to the Salzburg Festival. The ensemble’s extensive tours have taken it to the USA, South America, Asia and many European countries. The Vienna RSO has worked with such guest artists as Leonard Bernstein, Ernest Bour, Andrew Davis, Christoph von Dohnanyi, Christoph Eschenbach, Michael Gielen, Hans Werner Henze, Ernst Krenek, Bruno Maderna, Krzysztof Penderecki, Wolfgang Sawallisch, Giuseppe Sinopoli, Hans Swarowsky and Jeffrey Tate. Renowned guest conductors such as Michael Gielen, Peter Eötvös, Michel Plasson, Martyn Brabbins or Wayne Marshall, as well as representatives of the younger generation of conductors such as Tugan Sokhiev, Kirill Petrenko and Gabriel Feltz stood on the podium during the 2006/2007 season.

      The Vienna RSO has also established itself as an opera orchestra at Vienna’s KlangBogen Festival, with productions that include Massenet’s Werther, Menotti’s Goya, Mozart’s Idomeneo or Beethoven’s Fidelio. Beginning in 2007, the Vienna RSO performs at least three opera productions annually in the Theater an der Wien.

      The Vienna RSO’s extensive recordings for the ORF and its many CD productions include works of all genres, including many premieres of pieces by modern and contemporary classical Austrian composers.

      The Vienna RSO’s philosophy is also to provide a forum for talented young musicians of the coming generation. Examples of such projects include the ensemble’s performances with university and conservatory conducting students at their final exam concerts, the “Gradus ad Parnassum” competition, rehearsals for children and the “Classical Seduction” series of concerts in the RadioKulturhaus, in which children and youth learn about exemplary works from music history through performances and explanations. With the broadcast of this series as well as its concert programs, the ORF orchestra makes a major contribution to the program, which is complemented in “Ö1” (Austrian radio broadcasting company) with portraits of composers and interviews with musicians.

      www.rso-wien.orf.at

      Deborah Polaski

      American singer Deborah Polaski is among the world’s leading dramatic sopranos. She has appeared on all major opera and concert stages, including Berlin, London, New York, Milan, Munich, Paris, Salzburg and Vienna.

      The artist first came into the public eye through her portrayal of the great dramatic Wagner and Strauss roles. She also sang Marie in Berg’s Wozzeck as well as – since her debut at the Salzburg Festival in 2000 – Didon and Cassandre in Berlioz’ Les Troyens and the Küsterin in Janácˇek’s Jenufa.

      For years, the title role in Richard Strauss’ Elektra has been a central element in the artist’s repertoire; she has performed this work with many important conductors, orchestras and directors. She has also recorded it with Daniel Barenboim and Semyon Bychkov; she also made a television recording under Bychkov with the WDR Cologne.

      Other recordings include Sly by Ermanno Wolf-Ferrari, Wagner’s Ring, Lohengrin and Tristan und Isolde as well as Berlioz’ Les Troyens; Wagner’s Walküre, Siegfried, Götterdämmerung and Tristan und Isolde are available on DVD as well.

      Polaski sang at the Bayreuth Festival from 1988 until 1998, where she sang Brünnhilde more often than any other soprano after the war. For some years, Polaski has dedicated herself to Lied: accompanied by Charles Spencer, she has sung recitals since 1997; one CD is available. She has also appeared at the Staatsoper Berlin with Daniel Barenboim at the piano.

      Jane Henschel

      Jane Henschel was born in Los Angeles, where she also studied. Her artistic career began in Aachen, Wuppertal, Dortmund and at the Deutsche Oper am Rhein Dusseldorf/ Duisburg. She sang such roles there as Amneris (Aida), Eboli (Don Carlo), Azucena (Il trovatore), Ulrica (Un ballo in maschera), Brangäne (Tristan und Isolde), Ortrud (Lohengrin), Herodias (Salome) and Carmen. She appeared as a guest at opera houses in Milan, Zurich, Munich, Amsterdam and Berlin as well as at the festivals in Glyndebourne, Edinburgh, Schwetzingen and Ludwigsburg. She performed in the 1996 Salzburg Festival as Baba the Turk in Stravinsky’s The Rake’s Progress. In 1992 she debuted at the Covent Garden Opera London as Amme in Strauss’ Die Frau Ohne Schatten, one of her primary roles with which she first premiered at the Vienna State Opera in 2000. She also sang Fricka from Wagner’s Ring des Nibelungen, Mrs. Quickly from Verdi’s Falstaff and Klytämnestra (Elektra). Henschel also sang Erda at Covent Garden under Antonio Pappano, Auntie from Benjamin Britten’s Peter Grimes in Salzburg under Sir Simon Rattle and Mrs. Quickly under Kent Nagano at the Los Angeles Opera. Future invitations include reappearances at the London, Paris, Munich, Vienna and Barcelona operas as well as concerts.

      She also sang Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony in the Vienna Konzerthaus on New Year’s Eve 2006/2007 with the Vienna Symphonic under Fabio Luisi.

      Kwangchul Youn

      Kwangchul Youn is in extremely great demand as a bass. Born in Korea, Kwangchul Youn was a full-time ensemble member of the Berlin State Opera Unter den Linden from 1993 to 2004, where he sang in such works as Aida, La Bohème, Don Carlo, Don Giovanni, Elektra, Fidelio, Le Nozze di Figaro, Meistersinger, Parsifal, Robert Le Diable, Tannhäuser, Tristan und Isolde and Die Zauberflöte.

      Invitations followed, e.g. to Barcelona, Karlsruhe, Paris, the RuhrTriennale, the Vienna State Opera and the Vienna Klang- Bogen Festival.

      Additional engagements took him to internationally renowned festivals including those in Salzburg and Bayreuth. He also debuted at the Metropolitan Opera in New York during the 2004/05 season. Youn often appears as a concert singer and has been invited to sing with the Berlin Philharmonic, for example. He is now dedicating himself to Lied with his piano accompanist Helmut Oertel. He has performed in numerous CD productions, including the Bayreuth Festival Meistersinger under Daniel Barenboim, Reinhard Keiser’s opera Croesus under Rene Jacobs as well as Fidelio, Le Nozze di Figaro, Cosi fan tutte, Don Giovanni and Tiefland under Bertrand de Billy. His CD of Richard Strauss’ Daphne with the WDR Symphony Orchestra Cologne under Semyon Bychkov was nominated for a Grammy in 2006.

      Youn’s most recent appearance was in March 2007 in the role of Henry VIII in the concertante performance of Gaetano Donizetti’s Anna Bolena under Bertrand de Billy.

      Ruxandra Donose

      After completion of her studies in voice and piano in Bucharest, Romanian mezzo- soprano Ruxandra Donose’s career took off at a brilliant pace, starting with a contract at the Vienna State Opera. She repeatedly put in guest appearances at the Metropolitan Opera New York, the Opera Bastille Paris, the Royal Opera House Covent Garden London, the Hamburg State Opera, the Deutsche Opera Berlin, the Glyndebourne Festival, the Dresden Semper Opera, the Teatro La Fenice and the Salzburg Festival.

      She has already performed with such ensembles as the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra, the Munich and Berlin Philharmonic Orchestras, the Orchestre de Paris, the Gewandhausorchester or the Philadelphia Orchestra.

      She has sung all major mezzo-soprano roles, including Carmen, Charlotte (Werther), Cherubino, Sesto, Idamante, Octavian, Rosina (Il Barbiere di Siviglia), Adalgisa (Norma), Niklausse (Les Contes d’Hoffmann), Popova (The Bean), Giovanna Seymour (Anna Bolena), Proserpina (Orfeo), Romeo (I Capuleti e i Montecchi), Varvara (Katja Kabanova) or Antigone (Oedipe). She has also sung in Ravel’s Shéhérazade, Berlioz’ Les Nuits d’Ete, Gustav Mahler’s Second and Beethoven’s Ninth Symphonies as well as songs by Arnold Schoenberg, Alban Berg and Mahler. Donose has also established herself as an interpreter of sacred works. She recorded Dvorˇák’s Stabat Mater under Giuseppe Sinopoli, Bach’s B-Minor Mass under Sergiu Celibidache or Mozart’s Requiem under Donald Runnicle. In 2006 she released a CD with songs by Nicolae Bretan.

      Stela Grigorian

      Born in Tbilisi, Georgia, mezzo-soprano Stella Grigorian studied at the Vienna Conservatory. Her first engagement took her to the Vienna State Opera in 1998, where she was an ensemble member until June 2006. Her roles there included Rosina (Il barbiere di Siviglia), Pierotto (Linda di Chamounix), Bersi (Andrea Chenier), Meg Page (Falstaff ), Antigone (Oedipe), Stefano (Romeo et Juliette) as well as various Mozart operas under Riccardo Muti and Seiji Ozawa. She also sang Carmen at the Vienna Volksopera.

      In addition to her permanent Vienna commitments, she appeared as a guest in such venues as Graz (Massenet’s Werther) and in Ulm as Giovanna Seymour (Anna Bolena). Further invitations took her to the Zurich Opera; in 2004, she debuted at the Salzburg Festival followed by guest roles as Pierotto in Linda di Chamounix and Marcellina in Le Nozze di Figaro in Tokyo, as Isabella in Rossini’s L’ltaliana in Algeri for a new production in Klagenfurt and at the Klosterneuburg Festival, as Gräfin Helfenstein in Hindemith’s Mathis der Maler in the Vienna Konzerthaus (debut in May 2005) as well as in Respighi’s Il Tramonto with the Küchl Quartet in the Vienna Musikverein. She also sang Clitemnestra in Ignatz Pleyel’s Ifigenia in Aulide at the Pleyel Festival in August 2005. A recording of this production is available on CD. During the 2005/06 season, she sang Rosina, Stefano, Despina and Marcellina at the Vienna State Opera. Further roles were Bizet’s Carmen in Hamburg as well as her premiere as Giulietta in Offenbach’s Les contes d’Hoffmann.

      Ileana Tonca

      The young soprano Ileana Tonca was born in Brasov, Romania and studied at the Bucharest Academy of Music with Georgeta Stoleriu. She participated in various competitions and won a number of awards. She was a finalist in the 1997 Domingo Opera Competition in Hamburg and received the Special Prize at the awards ceremony for the Eberhard-Wächter medal of the Vienna State Opera.

      After her studies, Ileana Tonca was a soloist at the National Opera of Bucharest, where she performed such works as Mozart’s Entführung aus dem Serail, Rossini’s Il Barbiere di Siviglia, Donizetti’s L’elisir d’amore or Gounod’s Faust.

      She has been an ensemble member of the Vienna State Opera since the 1999/2000 season, where she sings such roles from Mozart (Don Giovanni, Zauberflöte), Verdi (Don Carlo, Falstaff ), Wagner (Ring des Nibelungen), Richard Strauss (Ariadne auf Naxos) or Bizet (Carmen). She also participates in projects for children. The soprano debuted at the Berlin State Opera Unter den Linden as Sophie in Strauss’ Rosenkavalier in the 2002/03 season.

      Ileana Tonca is also very active as a concert singer and has performed in Romania, France, Italy, Germany, Austria, Bulgaria and Japan. She has also been invited to various festivals in Austria and Germany.

      Nina Bernsteiner

      Nina Bernsteiner was born in 1982 in Graz and studied voice at the Vienna University of Music. She gave her stage debut in 2001 at the Schlosstheater Schönbrunn as Junge Witwe in Isang Yun’s one-act opera Die Witwe des Schmetterlings, returning there in 2003 as Fiordiligi from Mozart’s Così fan tutte. She also sang this role in 2004 in Schloss Frauenthal (Deutschlandsberg, Austria) and in the auditorium of Portoroz, Slovenia as well as in the Burgarena Reinsburg and in Holland (incl. the Concertgebouw, Amsterdam) in 2005. Further roles followed: Arminda in La finta giardiniera (Mozart), Hahn and Gastwirtin in Das schlaue Füchslein (Janacek), Musetta in La Boheme (Puccini) and Taumännchen in Hänsel und Gretel (Humperdinck). At the Vienna Volksoper she sang Anna in Wiener Blut and Barbara Delaqua in Eine Nacht in Venedig (Johann Strauss). In 2005 she sang Dinah in Trouble in Tahiti (Bernstein) in the Vienna Musikverein as well as Luise in Der junge Lord (Henze) in the Klagenfurt City Theater.

      Bernsteiner, who premiered in the Vienna Konzerthaus in a Musica Juventutis concert, has won numerous renowned competitions. She currently holds a scholarship given by the Zurich Weltner Foundation. Concert tours have taken her to Belgium, Holland, South Korea and China. She also performed in the new production of Erwin Schulhoff ’s only opera Flammen in the Theater an der Wien as well in the KlangBogen.

      Ante Jerkunica

      Bass Ante Jerkunica was born in 1978 in Split, Croatia, where he also got his first musical training. In 2004, he obtained his diploma from the Academy of Music in Lovran. He has completed master classes with Renata Scotto and Olivera Miljacovic, and won First Prize in 2005 in the First National Competition in Zagreb.

      This was followed by first opera appearances in Croatia with such roles as Oroveso (Bellini’s Norma), Raimondo (Donizetti’s Lucia di Lammermoor), Wurm (Verdi’s Luisa Miller), and most recently as Sarastro from Mozart’s Zauberflöte.

      In February 2006, Ante Jerkunica debuted in Germany as Sarastro at the Hanover Opera. He then sang in Verdi’s Ballo in Maschera at Berlin’s Deutsche Oper, where he was a scholarship recipient of the Weisweiler Foundation during the 2006/07 season.

      Erik Årman

      Erik Årman was born in 1970 in Stockholm. He began musical and vocal studies in 1985 at the Södra Latin Music High School in his home city (1985–88), simultaneously taking private voice lessons (1985–89). Following this, he completed two years of vocal training in Vienna (1989–91). He studied vocal pedagogy from 1991–95 at the Vienna Music Conservatory as well as voice with Sebastian Vittucci. Finally, he attended the Opera School at the Vienna City Conservatory for three years.

      Årman was engaged by various Vienna theaters while still a student, including the Volkstheater, Burgtheater, Schönbrunner Schlosstheater and Vienna Volksoper. He then appeared at the Volksoper, in the Vienna Musikverein and at KlangBogen Vienna. In 1998/99 he was asked to join the Passau opera ensemble, where he performed such roles as Malcolm in Verdi’s MacBeth and Methusalem in Wie einst im Mai by Kollo & Kollo. A guest contract took him to the Salzburg Landestheater in 1999; Årman was also hired by the Ulm theater from 1999 to 2004. Since 2004, Erik Årman has been a member of the ensemble at the Gärtnerplatz State Theater in Munich. He has also performed since then at the Komische Oper Berlin and the Bregenz Festival in works by Stephen Sondheim, Kurt Weill, Smetana, Britten and György Ligeti.

      Markus Raab

      Bass Markus Raab received his training from Elsa Marx and Wicus Slabbert. His career began at the 2002 Belvedere Competition in Vienna. Engagements in the St. Gallen City Theater and Vienna Kammeroper followed, where he debuted with great success in 2003 in the role of Osmin.

      Raab also participated in the 2002 Marlboro Music Festival in the USA; a busy concert schedule has taken him throughout Germany and Austria. He became a full-time ensemble member of the Vienna Volksoper in the 2003/04 season and sang such roles as Alcindoro (La Bohème), Richter (Flotow’s Martha), Antonio (Le Nozze di Figaro), General Lefort (Zar und Zimmermann), Baron Douphol and Dottore Grenvil (La Traviata), Ausrufer and Checco (Boccaccio), Rabe, Adler and the voice of Zeus (Braunfels’ Die Vögel), Yakuside (Madame Butterfly), Der Förster (Schreker) as well as Balthasar in the concertante performance of Schumann’s Genoveva. In 2004, Markus Raab sang Kezal in Klosterneuburg (Bartered Bride); in 2005, he was invited to sing Lord Syndham from Zar und Zimmermann in St. Gallen. He is currently appearing at the Volksoper as Micha (Bartered Bride), Vicomte Cascada (Die lustige Witwe) as well as in the new production of Zauberflöte and von Kienzl’s Der Evangelimann. Further roles include the Unbekannter/ Checco (Boccaccio) as well as the Nachtwächter from Wagner’s Meistersinger. He sang the Second Prisoner in Beethoven’s Fidelio at the Klang- Bogen Vienna under Bertrand de Billy; he is performing the Harlekin from Erwin Schulhoff ’s Flammen there as well.

      Slowakischer Philharmonischer Chor

      The Slovakian Philharmonic Chorus plays a prominent role in Slovakia’s cultural life. It was founded in 1946 as a mixed chorus of the Bratislava Radio; its first conductor was its initiator and founder Ladislav Slovak. In 1955, Jan Maria Dobrodinsky assumed the chorus’s leadership. His twenty years in this post was highly significant for the ensemble’s profile and artistic progress. In 1976 Valentin Iljin succeeded him; he in turn was followed by Lubomir Matl. Interim conductors before Matl included Stefan Klimo, Pavel Baxa, Pavel Prochazka and Marian Vach. Blanka Juhanakova continued this successful tradition: today, the Slovakian Philharmonic Chorus is among the best European ensembles of its type. Many conductors value the chorus’s technical ability, its cultivated expressivity, balanced sound as well as its broad repertoire, which reaches well into the modern (incl. Schoenberg and Messiaen). Some who have worked with the ensemble include James Conlon, Christoph von Dohnanyi, Claudio Abbado, Sir Roger Norrington, Lorin Maazel, Kurt Masur, Riccardo Chailly, Antonio Pappano, Valery Gergiev, Zubin Mehta and Georges Pretre.

      The chorus annually tours Europe; it has also travelled to Japan, Morocco or Turkey. It already works with the Berlin and Vienna Philharmonic Orchestras, the Vienna Symphonic, the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra or the Orchestre de Paris and has appeared at renowned festivals, including in Berlin, Edinburgh, Munich, Paris, Salzburg and Vienna. Numerous CD and radio recordings of the group are available.

      Tracklist hide

      hide CD 1
      • Paul Dukas (1865–1935)
        Ariane et Barbe-Bleue
        Opera en trois Actes
        sur un livret de Maurice Maeterlimck

        1er Acte
        • 1.Voix de la Foule: À mort! À mort!05:54
        • 2.La Nourrice: Où sommes-nous?03:40
        • 3.La Nourrice: Que faites-vous?02:24
        • 4.La Nourrice: Prenez-les! Penchez-vousl01:55
        • 5.Ariane: Ce sont de beaux saphirs01:13
        • 6.La Nourrice: J’en recuille une poignée qu’elles caressent les saphirs!00:41
        • 7.La Nourrice: Oh! celles-ci sont plus vertes que le printemps01:23
        • 8.La Nourrice: Celle-ci sont terribles, et je n’y touche point01:51
        • 9.Ariane: Ô mes clairs diamants!04:51
        • 10.Ariane entre sous la voûte, met la clef dans la serrure03:51
        • 11.Barbe-Bleue: Vous aussi?01:57
        • 12.Ariane: Que voulez-vous?02:14
      • 2e Acte
        • 13.Prélude05:01
        • 14.La Nourrice: Écoutez!03:04
        • 15.Ariane: Ah! Je vous ai trouvées04:43
        • 16.Ariane: Comment s’appele celle qui revient?03:12
        • 17.Ariane: Mais celle qui me regarde à travers se cheveux04:54
        • 18.Ariane: Où êtes-vous?05:40
        • 19.Ariane: Voilà, celle-ci encore et encore celle-ci!02:29
        • 20.Aux cris d’Ariane, Sélysette et Mélisande sortent de l’ombre08:05
      • Total:01:09:02
      more CD 2
      • 3e Acte
        • 1.Prélude05:42
        • 2.La même salle qu’au premier acte05:45
        • 3.Ariane: Cela vient d’elle-même et se cachait en elle04:28
        • 4.Sélysette: Quelles bagues choisirai-je?02:45
        • 5.La Nourrice: Il revient! Il est là!02.16
        • 6.La Nourrice: Voilà les paysans qui sortent des fossés03:52
        • 7.Toutes les Femmes: Non! Pas cela! Ne le tuez pas!02:32
        • 8.Un Vieux Paysan: Madame? … On peut entrer?03:00
        • 9.Ariane: Vous étiez à genoux!06:29
        • 10.Ariane: Adieu09:28
      • Total:44:01