On March 1 and 2, Music Director Hans Graf and the Houston Symphony will perform Alban Berg's expressionist opera, Wozzeck, in concert at Jones Hall.
Wozzeck is an evocative masterpiece of the 20th century, which is rarely performed by American opera companies or orchestras due to its challenging repertoire and subject matter. Famous for breaking new ground by musically portraying an intense psychological journey of an ill-fated soldier who returns home to a world where his tortured mind is unable to adjust to the realities of the civilian world, Wozzeck is a psychological mind-bender that will create an unforgettable experience for audience members. Created in 1922 by Alban Berg, Wozzeck is considered a groundbreaking composition and is the artistic highlight of Graf's 12-year tenure with the Houston Symphony. Performances will feature European powerhouse vocalists and Wozzeck experts, Roman Trekel in the title role and Anne Schwanewilms as Marie.
"Wozzeck brought Romantic music to a new level of expressivity," said Graf. "It has all of the ingredients of a Romantic opera with new means - it is not nice, very tragic. Yet, you will be taken by the music. It will be one of the greatest challenges that the Houston Symphony has faced in a decade, as it is very difficult music to play. But, it will remain in your memory forever. It is a treasure and will be one of the most important and exciting things I've done in my twelve years here."
From the audience perspective, this production will be different than a typical classical concert experience. Instead of formal sets that are common in operatic productions, the Symphony's production will only utilize lighting and furniture to change sets between all 15 scenes in Wozzeck. This allows the music and singers to be the storytellers with no extraneous distractions. Even several of the Symphony musicians will join in with the vocalists and take part in the action on stage.
Partnering with Rice University's Shepherd School of Music, the Houston Symphony is excited to welcome 10 current students and recent alumni in solo and supporting roles. Additionally, members of the Houston Grand Opera Children's Chorus, under the direction of Karen Reeves, will be featured throughout the performance.
Houston Symphony Classical Series
615 Louisiana St.
Houston, TX 77002
Friday, March 1, 2013, 8:00 PM
Saturday, March 2, 2013, 8:00 PM
Wozzeck in Concert
Hans Graf, conductor
Roman Trekel, Wozzeck
Anne Schwanewilms, Marie
Gordon Gietz, Drum Major
Marc Molomot, Captain
Nathan Berg, Doctor
Robert McPherson, Andres
Katherine Ciesinski, Margaret
Calvin Griffin, Apprentice 1
Samuel Schultz, Apprentice 2
Brenton Ryan, Fool
Voice Students from the Shepherd School of Music at Rice University Adult Chorus
Grant Loehnig, Director
Member of the Houston Grand Opera Children's Chorus
Karen Reeves, Director
Tickets from $25