Debussy / Lyssewski / D'annunzio - Le Martyre De Saint Sebastien | RECORD STORE DAY
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In 1910, the Italian poet Gabriele D'Annunzio wrote a play about the martyrdom of St. Sebastian. He enlisted Claude Debussy as the composer and the "Mystere en cinq mansions compose en rhythme francais" already premiered in 1911. The text combines and overlaps Christian and pagan traditions, playing with both the flair of antiquity and the fascination of the exotic. The Catholic Church took offense concerning the portrayal of Sebastian, who was played by a female Russian Jew, the dancer Ida Rubinstein, and the audience also reacted hesitantly, so that neither D'Annunzio's play nor Debussy's music to it remained in the repertoire of the concert halls. Debussy himself was very fond of his work and soon put together an orchestral suite, the "Fragments symphoniques", which adapts some of the central numbers of the incidental music for orchestra. Additionally, Desire-Emile Inghelbrecht created a kind of concert version that radically shortened the text and reduced it to around 15 minutes of recitation in addition to Debussy's music. The same applies to the present recording, which juxtaposes Debussy's original music with texts by the writer Martin Mosebach. These texts do not necessarily reflect the course of D'Annunzio's piece, but rather summarize central aspects of the Sebastian legend, sometimes more directly, sometimes more abstractly.The present version, a studio recording form 2005, is enriched with (German) text additions by the writer Martin Mosebach, making it thus unique among other recordings of Le Martyre.