As the Weimar Republic descended into chaos, the people escaped into hedonistic abandon and an explosion of creativity. Under this easy cover, the Nazi Party slowly slithered into power. With Hitler’s ascent, Germany’s greatest composers fled to seek freedom in the four corners of the world. Through the prodigious talents of baritone Peter Coleman-Wright AO and four virtuoso saxophonists of the Nexas Quartet, we follow the musical journey of these exiles from Berlin and Vienna to New York and beyond with a mixture of political songs from the Weimar period, the musical theatre of Weill, and the cabaret and song from Stolz and Schreker. These songs capture the spirit of the times: defiant, soulful and searching, but also capable of moments of exuberant joy and hope.
Peter Coleman-Wright is regarded as one of the world’s leading baritones, with a stellar career in the world’s leading concert halls including Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, the Met in New York and the Sydney Opera House; he finds the perfect foil for this music in the Sydney-based Nexas Quartet. The arrangements of these songs for baritone and saxophone quartet, created especially for this show, reflect a combination that would have been familiar to the clubs and bars where much of this music was first performed.
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