Opera Scotland

Carmina Burana Songs from Beuren

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Carl Orff (born Munich, 10 July 1895; died Munich, 29 March 1982)


The composer.


Anonymous manuscript of medieval songs in both Latin and Middle High German.



First Performance: Frankfurt (Städtische Bühnen), 8 June 1937.

First Performance in UK: London (Royal Festival Hall), 26 January 1960 (concert).

First performance in Scotland: tbc.



Based on songs found in manuscript at the mediaeval monastery of Benediktbeuren in Bavaria, Carmina Burana is, by an enormous margin, the most successful work by Orff. Rather like Mascagni and Leoncavallo, he tried for the rest of his life to match the success of this early work. In his lifetime he had new work performed regularly - one of his last pieces being premiered by Karajan at Salzburg, but since his death none of his other work seems to have achieved regular performance, even in Germany. There is little doubt that his unavoidable association with the Nazi regime has caused difficulties for Orff more than for older musical personalities such as Strauss or Furtwängler.




Tenor (occasionally Countetenor)


The Cast

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