A Multimedia Dramatic Reconstruction of Hanns Eisler’s Conversations with Hans Bunge 4/26 4pm
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A Multimedia Dramatic Reconstruction of Hanns Eisler’s Conversations with Hans Bunge
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HANNS EISLER IN CONVERSATION WITH HANS BUNGE
by Sabine Berendse and Paul Clements
Thursday, April 26, 2012 - 4:00pm
Frank W. Hale, Jr. Black Cultural Center, 153 W. 12th Ave., main campus
Born in Leipzig in 1898, Hanns Eisler is one of the most fascinating and controversial composers of the twentieth-century. Committedly left-wing and enormously versatile, Eisler composed in various genres: from chamber pieces in the style of the Schoenberg school to ‘agitprop’ ballads and choruses for the Workers’ Movement; from full symphonic works to the more conventional film scores he wrote for Hollywood.
Between 1958 until shortly before his death in 1962, Eisler was interviewed by Hans Bunge. These recorded conversations are intriguing, entertaining and informative personal reflections on half a century of artistic and political turbulence. Sometimes hilarious and at other times moving, they provide an insight into Eisler’s political ideas and his thoughts on the social significance of music; his opposition to Hitler and subsequent exile; his friendship with Bertolt Brecht and their collaboration; the encounter with McCarthy’s House Un-American Activities Committee; and the quality of artistic, political and intellectual life in the German Democratic Republic of the 1950s and early ‘60s.
Sabine Berendse, Hans Bunge’s daughter, and Paul Clements have recently finished the first complete translation into English of these conversations. This afternoon will be a dramatic reconstruction of extracts from the conversations, accompanied by many photographs and recorded music from Eisler himself.