Hermann Nitsch

Nationalgalerie im Hamburger Bahnhof / Historical hall

Die Musik des 6-Tage-Spiels 1998 (excerpts)
Orchestra concert with 40 musicians, conductor: Andrea Cusumano

Noise music, shouting choirs and sounds of all kinds are an integral component of the actions of Hermann Nitsch, who was born in Vienna in 1938. He has pursued his grandly conceived theatrical concept, a kind of Gesamtkunstwerk known as the “Orgien-Mysterien-Theater”, since the ’60s. Parallel to his theater work, Nitsch made concerts and recordings entitled “Selten gehörte Musik” (seldom heard music) during the ’70s in collaboration with artists such as Günter Brus, Dieter Roth, Gerhard Rühm and Oswald Wiener. In addition, the artist produced compositions for the organ as well as orchestral pieces.

Hermann Nitsch’s Sechstagespiel (six day play) began at Schloß Prinzendorf in Lower Austria at sunrise on August 3, 1998, and went on for six days and six nights. According to a detailed score, the participants included a total of 150 actors and a 150-person orchestra, accompanied by a brass band, Heurigen (traditional Austrian) musicians, and a choir. “The Sechstagespiel is a composition of actual events that can be experienced through all five senses … The six days and six nights can be compared to a six movement symphony, in which the dramatic and meditative movements alternate and complement each other.” (H.N.)

The event is considered a high point in the artistic creation of Hermann Nitsch. His score is the basis for this concert performance of “Die Musik des 6-Tage-Spiels” which, following its premiere in Vienna in October, 1999, now is being performed in Berlin and in Bonn. From the lengthy score of the six day play, Hermann Nitsch has selected excerpts from the first, third and fifth days, resulting in a performance in four movements for an orchestra of at least 40 musicians.

Ingrid Buschmann, Gabriele Knapstein, Matthias Osterwold

In cooperation with Nationalgalerie im Hamburger Bahnhof, Museum für Gegenwart – Berlin and Kunst- und Ausstellungshalle der Bundesrepublik Deutschland, Bonn. Made possible by Verein der Freunde der Nationalgalerie.

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