Sanaz Sotoudeh with a programme that explores in song, poetry and painting Europe's century-long love affair with the mystery and exoticism of the Orient. Ever fascinated by other cultures and their literature, the great Goethe fell under the spell of the 14th-century Persian poet Hafiz in his 60s. The upshot was the 'West-Östlicher Divan', a collection of love poems, epigrams and drinking songs modelled on Hafiz. Goethe's verses in turn inspired composers from Schubert and Mendelssohn, most famously in their 'Suleika' songs, to Hugo Wolf, while Richard Strauss's rarely heard Gesänge des Orients of 1928 include dazzling, virtuoso settings of Hafiz poems. From the mid-19th century French composers, poets and artists likewise succumbed to the lure of the Orient, epitomised by the stories from the Arabian Nights. Saint-Saëns composed a clutch of beguiling Mélodies persanes to poems by Armand Renaud, and Ravel brilliantly captured the East's fragrance and erotic languor in his cycle Shéhérazade.
- Schubert, Strauss, Divan, Wolf, Ravel, Saens, Faure
- Featured Artist:
- Sanaz Sotoudeh