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Schultz, Wolfgang-Andreas: Die Nachtfahrt der Sonne (2. Symphonie) (2000/01) 30'
for piano and orchestra


2(II=picc).1.corA.1.bcl.2- gong/2susp.cym(lg,sm)/2tam-t(lg,sm)/TD/BD/2lo congas/whip-harp-pft-strings(

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Composer's Notes


Programme Note

The drama of the sun-god’s nightly journey through the Egyptian underworld, the passing of the serpent-guarded gates, approach to the judgment-hall of Osiris, and eventual rebirth at the start of a new day, was a matter of vital consequence to the ancient Egyptian. It was his ambition at death to join the sun-god and, having been justified before the throne of Osiris, to achieve a blessed immortality.
In his musical realisation of this ancient myth Wolfgang-Andreas Schultz has shirked none of the underworld terrors that face both god and human soul. The private hopes and fears are enshrined in a virtuoso piano part, while the twelve hours of night are the province of an orchestra that is deployed with ever-varied and uncanny resource. Key aspects of the drama have been translated into leading motifs that are readily recognisable. The result is a fascinating work that is a piano concerto in all but name which yet makes vivid and relevant the daily mystery of the sun’s apparent disappearance and appearance.
Professor Robert Anderson
[Professor Sir Robert Anderson (musicologist, conductor and egyptologist) is Co-ordinating Editor of the Elgar Complete Edition and wrote three books about Elgar. He has conducted all Bach-Cantatas, most of the famous oratorios from Haydn to Elgar and many symphonies (among them Mahler’s 8th Symphony). He held professorships at universities in England, USA, Russia and Poland. For eighteen years he was also associate editor of ‘The Musical Times’.]

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