"The Poetry of the Earth" - Under this title, a beautiful article was published about my dance film and performance of "The Rite of Spring" with the German National Philharmonic
Article about my production of "Sacre du Printemps" in the Rhein-Pfalz:
"The Poetry of the Earth" - Under this title, a beautiful article was published about my dance film and production of "Sacre du Printemps" with the Deutsche Staatsphilharmonie.
"The Poetry of the Earth" is the title of Leonard Bernstein's lecture as part of his Harvard lectures from 1973, focusing primarily on Igor Stravinsky's music. And thus also on his ballet "Le Sacre du Printemps" (The Rite of Spring), whose premiere in 1913 at the Théâtre des Champs-Elysées in Paris caused one of the greatest theater scandals of the 20th century. The proximity of this composition to nature, to the earth, to our fundamental life foundations, was later vividly expressed by "Lenny" during rehearsals for the work with the orchestra of the Schleswig-Holstein Music Festival in 1987.
Today, Stravinsky's music for "Le Sacre du Printemps" is standard repertoire on concert stages around the world. Conductors like to conduct the work because it shows whether and how well they can conduct. And for large orchestras, it is also a work that can ideally demonstrate their virtuosity. Moreover, the rhythmic primal power of this music and its radical tonal language are as strong today as they were 109 years ago.
There have been countless and very different stage versions of "Le Sacre" since its premiere by the Ballets Russes of Sergei Diaghilev.
Film and Dance
At the Modern Times Festival of the Deutsche Staatsphilharmonie Rheinland-Pfalz, there will be a very special and exciting version of "Sacre du Printemps" on September 8th at the Friedrich-Ebert-Halle in Ludwigshafen. Of course, the music will be played live by the Staatsphilharmonie under the direction of Chief Conductor Michael Francis. A performance with film and dance, created by director Isabella Freilinger, will be presented. She has translated the narrative of the ballet into a modern fairy tale. The dancers of the Académie de Ballet Heidelberg will dance not only on screen but also live in the Ebert-Halle.
It is a dream project for her, says the actress and director Isabella Freilinger in a conversation prior to the production. Because it brings together many areas of work in which she is involved. She is fully committed and loves the piece very much, she emphasizes.
Actually, a performance had already been planned a year ago, but Corona did not allow it. However, the film has been ready since that time. Now Isabella Freilinger is working on the live parts in collaboration with choreographer Eveline Krüger-Maitrel, who is also responsible for the design. This is a very creative exchange. Eveline Krüger-Maitrel and she inspire each other, says the director, who has already realized several projects with the Staatsphilharmonie.
For example, the digital platform "Perspective 360", for which the orchestra was awarded gold at the German Prize for Online Communication (dpok) in the category "Microsite".
Magical Journey of Discovery
Nature is the central theme in Isabella Freilinger's version of "Sacre". The artist, who works as an actress and director, and also writes screenplays, has created a new story for the piece about the Rite of Spring, which is primarily about the relationship between civilization and nature.
At the center of the story is Lea, a young woman. She comes from the city, meets a group of dancing environmentalists, and goes with them into a forest, experiencing nature, transforming, blooming, and becoming part of nature. The experience of nature destruction is also part of the story, but primarily, it aims to take the audience on a magical journey. Magical is a word that the director uses repeatedly to describe her project. The stylistic devices include, as she says, ballet, modern dance, hip-hop, African dance, or performance elements. As Isabella Freilinger says, her aim was to translate the idea of the ballet into the present day. After writing the story, she oddly enough discovered that there are many parallels to the original material in her new story.
Involved in the performance are professional dancers, but also children and teenagers who have engaged with the topic. Katharina Geyer dances the lead role, and Medelice Krüger-Maitrel performs a hip-hop solo.
In Ludwigshafen, there will initially be only this performance, but Isabella Freilinger reports that there have already been inquiries from other orchestras, including from France, Austria, and Switzerland, to take over the production. Isabella Freilinger can also imagine future performances in other versions, for example, with a piano version of Stravinsky's music.