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Richard Strauss: Film Music - Der Rosenkavalier

Posted by Robert Bettens

Added on Tuesday, November 06, 2018

Richard Strauss: Film Music - Der Rosenkavalier

This double CD does NOT represent Richard Strauss' music for his famous opera, but corresponds to his own score for a German silent film named also 'Der Rosenkavalier', produced in 1926. The film does follow the story of the opera's libretto, but obviously not as a sung story. Consequently, Richard Strauss (and some assistents) turned the orchestral music from the opera into a film score, adapting the music for each scene. In some cases Strauss used additional musical material for scenes that did not exist in the original opera. Consequently, this film score is NOT a simple orchestral reproduction of the music of the opera, but a reworking of it.
This double CD is very interesting. We all know that great classical composers such as Shostakovich, Prokofiev, Walton, Korngold, etc., had written film scores, but almost nobody knows that the great Richard Strauss had also written once for the silver screen (except for the better known 'München, ein Gedächtniswaltzer' originally intended for a documental film). Until this recording came into surface, Strauss film version of his operatic score had been really forgotten. Now we can here this new version of Strauss' music, which is not identical to the opera. Many will say that this COPY is inferior to the ORIGINAL, and probably it can be true, but we must not forget that, as a matter of fact, except for some suites prepared by Strauss and other arrangers from the opera's music, there is really no extended version of the opera's orchestral music. With this film score at least we can here, in a modified version, almost 150 minutes of continued music. Moreover, the music is played by a fist rate German orchestra (its name has changed along the decades, but the quality remains) and conducted by a well-known Strauss expert.

Richard Strauss: Film Music - Der Rosenkavalier soundtrack page