Noticias

Ha fallecido Aribert Reimann

Redacción
jueves, 14 de marzo de 2024
Aribert Reimann © 2024 by Schott Music Aribert Reimann © 2024 by Schott Music
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El compositor y pianista acompañante Aribert Reimann (Berlín, 4.03.1936 - 13.03.2024) falleció el pasado 13 de marzo en su ciudad natal, Berlín, por causas que su familia no ha dado a conocer. Su última aparición pública fue el pasado 8 de febrero, cuando recibió el Deutschen Musikautorinnenpreis der GEMA "a la obra de toda una vida". 

Su dedicación al teatro musical está muy vinculada a su profesión como pianista de cámara vocal y a su amistad con algunos de los mejores cantantes de los últimos cincuenta años. Su ópera más representada es Lear (1976-78) -que se ha visto en más de 35 teatros de todo el mundo- que se estrenó en España este mismo año, enero de 2024, en el Teatro Real, en una producción de Calixto Bieito. Y precisamente el próximo 21 de marzo está previsto el estreno de una nueva producción de Lear, a cargo de Joe Hill-Gibbins, en la Ópera de Hannover. 

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Muy interesado por la cultura española y fascinado por la figura de Federico García Lorca, a él dedicó su séptima ópera, La Casa de Bernarda Alba (1998-2000), estrenada en España en el Festival Castell de Peralada en 2001. Mundoclasico.com ha reseñado la representación en Essen en 2019 de su penúltima ópera, Medea (2007-2009), y el estreno mundial en la Deutsche Oper Berlin en octubre de 2017 de su última ópera, L‘Invisible. Trilogie lyrique (2011-2017), sobre textos de Maurice Maeterlinck, además de diversas reseñas de sus óperas e incluso del propio Reimann como pianista (desde 1999)

Obituario del Teatro Real

El Teatro Real lamenta profundamente el fallecimiento del compositor Aribert Reimann

El Teatro Real ha recibido hoy, con mucha tristeza, la noticia del fallecimiento de Aribert Reimann (Berlín, 1936-2024), autor de la ópera Lear (1978), cuyo estreno en España, el pasado 26 de enero, fue uno de los más grandes y emocionantes acontecimientos de la presente temporada.

De acuerdo con el obituario publicado por Schott, editora de sus partituras, Reimann falleció ayer, 13 de marzo, en Berlín, pero “su empático sentido de la humanidad seguirá vivo en sus obras.”

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Hace poco más de un mes el compositor, que por problemas de salud no pudo venir finalmente a Madrid para el estreno de su ópera, escribió un cariñoso mail a todos los artistas que participaban en la producción: "with my thoughts I‘ll be with all of you at the Premiere and the following performances!”.

Reimann tenía previsto asistir al estreno de Lear en la primera fecha que se programó, en abril de 2020, pero hubo de ser aplazado debido al confinamiento provocado por la pandemia.

Joan Matabosch, director artístico del Teatro Real, se expresaba así en relación a la enorme impronta de Reimann en la ópera de la segunda mitad del siglo XX: 

Aribert Reimann ha sido el gran defensor de la ópera como forma de arte en el momento en el que las vanguardias de su generación la consideraban como un vestigio del romanticismo que no se correspondía con una sociedad que había sobrevivido la Segunda Guerra Mundial. Él fue la excepción entre los compositores de su generación y compuso algunas de las mejores óperas del siglo XX. Una de ellas, Lear, basada en la tragedia de Shakespeare, se ha convertido en un título imprescindible. Su estilo musical encaja perfectamente con el tema sombrío del texto shakespeariano, en la estela dejada por ElektraWozzeckErwartung y Die Soldaten. Pero Reiman, sin dejar de adoptar el lenguaje musical más radical de su época, no deja de temperarlo con un maravilloso sentido de la dramaturgia musical y la economía de medios. 

Las seis funciones de Lear en el Teatro Real, con dirección musical de Asher Fisch y puesta en escena de Calixto Bieito, fueron unánimemente alabadas por la crítica nacional e internacional y un descubrimiento para gran parte del público, que pudo conocer a uno de los más importantes compositores de repertorio lírico de los últimos 50 años.

Obituario de Schott

I knew I would be an outsider

Aribert Reimann, one of the most distinguished composers of the post-war generation, has died at the age of 88.

Reimann was born into a musical family in Berlin. His mother was a singer and his father a professor of church music and director of the Berlin Domchor [cathedral choir]. He grew up in a Protestant home with excellent connections and the foundations for a career as a lieder accompanist were laid at an early stage. At a house concert in which Reimann accompanied his mother’s students, he made acquaintance with the pianist Michael Raucheisen who gave him vital impulses. At a later stage, the young Reimann studied counterpoint with Ernst Pepping and composition with Boris Blacher. Blacher was associated with the functional modern style, but soon urged his student to find his "own language". 

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Aribert Reimann achieved this aim early on in his career. His musical language was not only quite unlike that of Blacher’s generation, but also diverged from the rigorous stipulations purported in Darmstadt. Being ten years younger than composers such as Hans Werner Henze, Reimann was able to circumnavigate all forms of direct confrontation, but his decision to avoid an orientation to a specific school was also not taken lightly. Aribert Reimann became a loner whose path over the next few decades would be characterised by his highly personal sense of individualism. 

Aribert Reimann was one of the first composers to use settings of texts by Paul Celan whom he had met in Paris in 1957. Reimann succeeded brilliantly in doing justice to the highly artificial and yet moralistic aspirations of these poems “after Auschwitz”. He never shied away from the exalted tone of these texts and other material from world-class literature: on the contrary, he deliberately homed in on them, engaging in a self-critical struggle through their musical settings to create an appropriate and authentic musical language as a reflection of the intrinsic historicity of these texts. 

Fundamentally speaking, Reimann was not a political composer, but his oeuvre also includes compositions addressing the burning issues of his time as impressively exemplified by his Requiem Wolkenloses Christfest which was written in 1974 during the war in Vietnam. Nevertheless, Reimann aspired to achieve a timeless topicality rather than a perceived participation in current affairs which could explain why he primarily selected his subjects from the canon of world literature, particularly within an operatic context. 

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Notwithstanding the alleged impossibilities of the genre, Reimann also composed operas: he was a storyteller and placed his trust in the indestructible magic of words and, above all, the human voice. He brought a whole series of major tragic female protagonists to the stage with Melusine (1970), Troades (1985), Bernarda Albas Haus (1998/2000) and Medea (2007/09). Time and time again, audiences were captivated by his honest empathy and the humanity of his approach to music theatre. 

Reimann’s great breakthrough came in 1978 with his opera Lear. Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau not only provided inspiration for the work, but also sang the title role at the world premiere in Munich. The opera subsequently began its triumphal march through opera stages across the world and today still seems fresher than ever before. Reimann found an intensely convincing musical language for the profoundly disturbing theme of the work -“the isolation of an individual in utter loneliness, exposed to the entire brutality and dubious nature of life”- employing a tonal palette ranging from violent agglomerations of sound right down to the most delicately calm moments. 

Reimann’s compositions have been published exclusively by Schott Music since 1960 and have provided inspiration for many younger composer colleagues over the decades as frankly expressed by Wolfgang Rihm in his laudation on the occasion of Reimann’s 80th birthday in the Deutsche Oper in Berlin. Only Reimann was capable of writing in this manner for the voice and his feeling for “cantabile and economy” were without doubt exemplary

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Reimann’s musical language is indeed characterised by this dialectic and is utterly shaped by the composer’s absolute control over the material and his simultaneous striving for the greatest possible freedom and openness. It was only natural that Reimann mastered serial and twelve-tone technique, utilised micropolyphony and the formation of clusters as compositional mediums, but an individual work in the emphatic sense always evolved out of the consistently immaculate technical foundations, substantially transcending the confines of its construction. Reimann remained loyal to his strict definitions of the work and its form, but while linearly developed progressions and logical structures offered a secure footing, the composer was at the same time constantly on the search for the greatest possible freedom, for example in metre and notation. 

The broad spectrum of Reimann’s instrumental compositions ranges from unaccompanied solos (e.g. for cello, clarinet and oboe) via chamber music and solo concertos such as the two Piano Concertos (1961, 1972) and the Violin Concerto for Gidon Kremer (1995/96) to large-scale orchestral forms such as the Variationen für Orchester (1975) and the Zeit-Inseln (2004), but the composer completely avoided traditional genres such as symphonies or string quartets. 

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Reimann’s mastery in the treatment of the human voice enabled him to work with renowned singers including Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau, Elisabeth Grümmer and Brigitte Fassbaender. He made innumerable recordings as a lied pianist, demonstrating the uncommon expanse of his repertoire, composed virtuoso and yet never unsingable roles for frequently young singers as a highly productive lied and opera composer and, in his capacity as a teacher at music colleges in Hamburg and Berlin, ultimately shaped an entire generation of singers for whom contemporary music became firmly established in the repertoire right from the start. 

Aribert Reimann died in Berlin on 13 March 2024. It is with great respect that we bid farewell to a great artist whose empathetic sense of humanity will continue to live on in his works.

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