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Songs and Poets: Songs of Travel

Song recitals in the foyer
Mon 29.04.2019 - 20:00 h
€ 16,– / concs.: € 8,–*

*) All those eligible to pay reduced prices (concessions) can claim the discount rate as soon as tickets go on general sale. If purchasing online, please select the "ermäßigt" 'sale type' in the dropdown menu under the hall chart, after choosing your seat(s).

Informationen zum Werk

About the performance

In his choice of literary source material for his first song cycle the British composer Ralph Vaughan Williams was already revealing his sharp eye for quality: the lyrics for his “Songs of Travel” (1901) were taken from a newly published volume of poetry by Robert Louis Stevenson, whose verse has always been overshadowed by his great novels. In this edition of “Songs and Poets” Williams’s lieder are placed in juxtaposition to arguably the greatest cycle in the history of French liedkunst: Maurice Ravel’s 1926 “Chansons madécasses” based on prose poems by Evariste de Parny, an obscure 18th-century French poet. This cycle, in the unusual configuration of vocals, flute, violin and piano – a clear rejection of salon exoticism -, renders de Parny’s Madagaskar as a fascinatingly different world bursting with sensuality on the one hand and archaic violence on the other.

Providing his own response to the songs will be Farhad Showghi (born 1961 in Prague), tipped as the boldest poet working in the German language. For his latest volume of poetry, Wolkenflug spielt Zerreißprobe (kookbooks, 2017), Showghi received the Peter Huchel Prize, Germany’s most prestigious poetry award.


Classical art songs and modern poetry – lieder recital meets poetry reading in this series of events organised jointly with the Haus für Poesie Berlin. Each of the four evening events held in the foyer of the Deutsche Oper Berlin will feature a poet reading original works whose themes complement the songs on the programme.

Ralph Vaughan Williams [1872 – 1958]
„On Wenlock Edge“
„Songs of Travel“

Maurice Ravel [1875 – 1937]
„Chansons Madécasses“
„Cinq Mélodies Populaires Grecques“

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A joint production of the Deutsche Oper Berlin and the Haus für Poesie