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Ein Wiener Nachtporträt

Ein Wiener Nachtporträt highlights seven composers whose work has been deeply influenced by the city of Vienna, and shows the development of the avantgarde in that city over the course of multiple centuries.

Beethoven’s two short string trio movements represent the classical roots of Vienna, an anchor in the past. Schönberg wrote his first works at the end of the 19th century, including the string sextet Verklärte Nacht, which conjures up the fading era of Romanticism. As he wrote it, the Second Viennese School was forming around him, setting off the avantgarde of the 20th century for which he would become famous.

Roman Haubenstock-Ramati is less well known than he was in his time. His work bridges the gap between the Second Viennese School and contemporary music of the 1950s. He was greatly influenced by Anton Webern at the beginning of his career, and began working with graphic scores in the 1950s.

Peter Ablinger, Beat Furrer, Christoph Herndler and Georg Nussbaumer (the only one of these four who did not study with Haubenstock-Ramati) have each developed their own highly personal styles despite (or because of) having been heavily influenced by their studies with him.