- Anton Batagov (b. 1965):
- 1You Who Are There08:26
- 3The Wind04:42
- 4The Goddess06:44
- 5That’s Me06:38
- 6The Cinematograph06:28
- 7My Queen12:42
- 8Fall, Leaves07:21
- 9The Kiss06:37
- 10My Joy06:17
- 11The Dark One06:37
- 12A Little Night Rock-n-roll05:22
- 13The Secret07:17
- 14The Flight07:11
- 15The Ballad Which Anne Askew Made and Sang When She Was in Prison08:05
- 16Beneath the Waves11:49
- 17P.S. You Who Are There04:26
Info zu 16+
When we talk about ‘a poetess’ or ‘female poetry’, it usually sounds like ‘women behind the wheel’, in a patronizing and mocking way, meaning that it’s impossible to seriously discuss women’s literary art in our patriarchal civilization.
A while ago, I found out that the first poet whose name came down to us was a woman. She lived back in the 23 rd century BC, in the Sumerian city-state Ur. Her name was Enheduanna. She was the high priestess of the goddess Inanna and the god Nanna, composed hymns and prayers and sang them. They have been preserved and translated into modern languages. These texts aren’t simply outstanding poetry. They are quintessential to what Buddha, and then Jesus Christ, said to the people two thousand years later.
So I had this idea to compose a song cycle based on poems written only by women. I started exploring this absolutely amazing layer of literature, read a few thousand texts created in various eras: poems, hymns, prayers, poetic descriptions of visions and revelations, and selected 16 of them. Any choice suggests abandoning something. I decided to limit myself to two languages, English and Russian, having to leave ‘off screen’ a huge number of masterpieces composed in other languages. My selection does not claim to have any historical or geographical order. What was really important to me is that all these texts take shape of a ‘journey’.
The cycle contains 9 texts in English and 7 in Russian. Out of nine English-language texts, three were written by British authors, three by Americans, and three were translated from Sumerian, Middle Dutch and Hindi.
Out of seven Russian-language texts, one is not in modern Russian, but in Church Slavonic, translated from Greek. Its author is Kassia, venerated as a saint, and the translations of her works into Church Slavonic are included in the Orthodox canon.
All 16 authors are unique personalities, and reading their biographies alone makes a huge impression.
All these works composed in various centuries and millennia tell essentially the same story: of love that a woman feels deeply and uncompromisingly; of love, in which the God and the lover are the same. The woman received a ‘lunar mystery’ from the universe, and this secret can be a destructive weapon, but the inconceivable female nature transforms domination into self-renunciation, dissolves power in tenderness, and the truth can be attained not as a result of logical constructs and debates, but is experienced as the natural state-space, where nothing exists but love. It’s there that all our meetings take place, and any journeys we take are just different route options — but they all lead us there. (Translated by Kate Pirogova)
"We live on a female planet, where male roles are insignificant. Men will always be children, no matter how much pleasure they take in patriarchy, greatness, games of science and power." (Evgeny Golovin)
Nadine Koutcher, soprano, percussion
Anton Batagov, piano, percussion
Soprano Nadine Koutcher came to international attention when she was awarded First Prize at the 2015 Cardiff Singer of the World competition. She made her debut at the Grand Theatre de Geneve in the fall of 2015 as Mathilde in Rossini’s Guillaume Tell and subsequently debuted at the Berlin State Opera as Violetta in La Traviata and at the Theatre du Capitole in Toulouse as the Countess Almaviva in Le Nozze di Figaro. Koutcher also made her London recital debut in May of 2016. In the current season, Koutcher sings The Queen of the Night in Die Zauberflöte at the Bolshoi Theatre of Belarus and Violetta in La Traviata at the Theatro Municipal de São Paulo, as well as a recital in St. Petersburg and a concert of arias in Amsterdam.
A native of Minsk, Koutcher studied at the St. Petersburg Conservatory under Tamara Novichenko and was soon thereafter awarded both Grand Prix and Audience Prize at the Hertogenbosch International Vocal Competition. In 2012, she joined the ensemble at the Perm State Opera, where she has since appeared in various roles. Koutcher made her South American debut in 2014 at the Teatro Municipal de Santiago, Chile as Elvira in Bellini’s I Puritani and returned to Santiago in 2015 as Amenaide in Rossini’ Tancredi. She has also been heard as Violetta in La Traviata at the Mikahilovsky Theatre in St. Petersburg and Doña Isabel in Peter Sellars’ production of Henry Purcell’s The Indian Queen at the Teatro Real de Madrid, under the baton of Teodor Currentzis, with whom she has also frequently collaborated in Perm. Koutcher also recently performed as a soloist in Verdi’s Requiem with the London Symphony Orchestra. Future engagements include Delia in Fosca at Theatro Municipal de São Paulo and the title role in Lucia di Lammermoor in Toulouse.
Koutcher’s repertoire also includes Donna Anna in Don Giovanni, Konstanze in Die Entführung aus dem Serail, Marfa in The Tsar’s Bride, Amina in La Sonnambula, and the title role in Massenet’s Manon. As a soloist with an orchestra, she has also performed the Requiems of Brahms, Mozart and Ravel, as well as many other works.
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