Richard Strauss: Ariadne auf Naxos
This live recording of Ariadne auf Naxos in October 2014 not only
took place at the site of the premiere of the opera’s revised
version, but also marked Christian Thielemann’s first conducting
engagement for a Strauss opera at the opera house on the Ring.
The cast includes Soile Isokoski (Ariadne), Johan Botha (Bachus),
in one of his last performances before his untimely death,
Daniela Fally (Zerbinetta), Sophie Koch (the composer), Jochen
Schmeckenbecher (the music teacher) and Peter Mati (the
Strauss’ first version of Ariadne was intended to follow a
performance of Molière’s Le Bourgeois gentilhomme; for this
reason, the premiere was six hours long and many in the audience
felt that they had just attended a first-rate funeral. Clearly, the
work needed some restructuring: Molière’s play was replaced by
the Prologue, and premiered four years later on 4 October 1916
at Vienna’s Court Opera (today’s State Opera).