Monday, February 23, 2015

EVAs ZWEITGEBURT

MONTAG AUS LICHT
Greeting
MONTAGs-
GRUSS
Act 1
EVAs ERSTGEBURT
Act 2
EVAs ZWEITGEBURT
Act 3
EVAs ZAUBER
Farewell
MONTAGs
ABSCHIED

Act 1's Budgerigar-Boy (now a man) plays a "Conception" piano solo into EVE's womb.
(All photos on this page© www.karlheinzstockhausen.org)
No. 57: EVAs ZWEITGEBURT
(EVE's Second Birth-Giving) for girls' choir, piano, 7 solo boy singers, 3 basset-horns, 1 singing basset horn, choir (live or tape), 3 synthesizers, percussion, and tape (Sound Scenes), staged with 21 actresses

The Second Act of
MONTAG AUS LICHT (MONDAY from LIGHT)
1984-1987 [66 min]

Also:
No. 57 Extract 1: MÄDCHENPROZESSION (Girls' Procession) version for girls' choir and piano [19']
No. 57 1/2, 2/3 (ie 57.2, 57.3): MÄDCHENPROZESSION, BEFRUCHTUNG mit KLAVIERSTÜCK - WIEDERGEBURT 
     (Girls' Procession, Conception with Piano Piece / Re-Birth) for girls' choir, piano, synth, perc., tape [27']
     No. 57 2/3 Extract 1: KLAVIERSTÜCK XIV (BIRTHDAY-FORMULA of MONDAY from LIGHT) for piano, 1984 [6']
No. 57 3/4 (ie 57.4): EVAs LIED (EVE's Song) for 7 boy soloists, bassett horns, synth, perc., tape [48'30"]
     No. 57 3/4 Extract 1: DIE 7 LIEDER DER TAGE (The 7 Songs of the Days) for soloist and chordal instrument (voice w. piano, etc...) [9']
     No. 57 3/4 Extract 2: WOCHENKREIS (Circle of the Week) for basset-horn and synthesizer [25'30"] 

Introduction
     EVAs ZWEITGEBURT (EVE's Second Birth-Giving) is the 2nd Scene of Stockhausen's dramatic music work MONTAG AUS LICHT (MONDAY from LIGHT), which was the 3rd-composed entry of his 7-part, 29-hour opera cycle LICHT (LIGHT).  LICHT is a work for acoustic and electronic operatic forces, divided into the 7 days of the week (one opera for each day).  This opera cycle revolves around 3 archetype characters, MICHAEL, EVE and LUCIFER, and over the 29 hours each of these characters are introduced, come into conflict, face temptation and finally come into union.  The music is almost entirely based on a "super-formula", which is a 3-layered melodic-thematic representation of the 3 characters.  These formula-themes are together and separately threaded throughout the opera's vocal and instrumental fabric.  Story-wise, actors and narrative can (and often do) change from scene to scene, and the libretto text is sometimes made up of non-traditional grammar (or even purely phonetic sounds).

     MONTAG (Monday) is EVE's Day and a celebration of birth and the rebirth of humanity.  The main element connected with MONTAG is water.  The 3 Acts in MONTAG AUS LICHT are EVAs ERSTGEBURT (EVE's First Birth-Giving), EVAs ZWEITGEBURT and EVAs ZAUBER (EVE's Magic), and they are preceded and followed by MONTAG'S GRUSS (Monday Greeting) and MONTAG's ABSCHIED (Monday Farewell) respectively.  In EVAs ZWEITGEBURT, a candle-lit girls' procession praises EVE as the Budgerigar-Boy from Act 1 returns to impregnate the giant EVE statue with a piano solo.  Afterwards, during "Re-Birth", 7 boys are born.  Soon, a "Couer de Basset" appears and with some other soloists seduce the newly arrived boys.
This Act has 4 Scenes:
  1. MÄDCHENPROZESSION (Girls' Procession)
  2. BEFRUCHTUNG mit KLAVIERSTÜCK (Conception with Piano Piece)
  3. WIEDERGEBURT (Re-Birth)
  4. EVAs LIED (EVE's Song) 
EVAs LIED is further divided into 4 sub-scenes
  • COEUR DE BASSET
  • WOCHENKREIS (Circle of the Week)
  • BASSETTINEN (Basset Teases)
  • INITIATION
     In Scenes 1, 2 and 3 the main element is the girls' choir with a brief (but important!) piano solo.  Scene 4 features the basset horn (mostly solo, but then becoming a trio with a female vocal soloist), 7 boy soloists and synthesizers.  In a stage production, some scenes have brief male and female choral parts projected from tape.  Throughout the Act, 16 taped "Sound Scenes" (brief quadrophonic field recordings of nature, human voices, environments, animals, historical broadcasts, etc..) also surface which either provide the sound effect for a stage action, or comment on the proceedings, or both - usually to humorous effect.

Narrative:
       The stage production of EVAs ZWEITGEBURT (and for all of MONTAG AUS LICHT for that matter) is very elaborate, and a text synopsis really can't do justice to all of the many rich visual elements.  The CD recording is an excellent studio representation of the opera's musical elements and so here I will mainly concentrate on that.  The booklet (book, actually) that comes with the MONTAG AUS LICHT CD has much more detailed descriptions, photographs, libretto and score excerpts.
      
     In the descriptions below I sometimes identify a structure as being based on the EVE, MICHAEL or LUCIFER formulas (or Nuclear formulas).  These can be seen below.

MICHAEL formula
EVE formula
LUCIFER formula


www.karlheinzstockhausen.org)
Scene 1 - MÄDCHEN PROZESSION
(Girls' Procession)
     On a frozen shore, women are hacking at ice blocks.  Suddenly the lights go out in a power failure.  3 groups of girls approach the stage in lily blossom costumes, lighting the stage with their hand-held candles.  They sing a song of praise and thanks to EVE, and ask her to give birth to more musical human beings.

Text excerpts:
     "EVE Mother we your children jubilate: Wonderful is the creator of women...the painter of her colors...the sculptor of her forms...  MONDAY from LIGHT:  Ceremony for Thanksgiving to God...a musical celebration for EVE who, in our universe, for our Earth, is the loving helper for the rebirth of mankind....  We sing to move you, to continue to help us, to procreate healthier, more beautiful, more musical human beings.  Deliver, give birth EVE, found a new paradise of children."
Trk Dur. Title Girls' choir 3 Synthesizers, Percussion Tape
1 1:47 "Luna - meer - Samudra.."









Synths play drone textures









Mixed Choir:
SA: 2-part melody,
TB: overtone drones

Lights go out, confused  crew calls out "Main switch!  Where’s the flashlight?" (not on CD)
2 1:21 "EVE mother, we your children jubilate." (Girls' choir enters with candles)
9-part girls' choir sings rhythms in 3/4 against 4/4 (actually triple meter against duple meter) throughout Scenes 1 - 3.  

Includes tongue clicks, whispered tones
Synths independently play sets of 6-7 pitches as "sparkling points", as well as a low drone on G

Percussion plays intermittently with girls' choir


























female choir groups sing continuous drone (E, Bb, F#)




























3 0:54 "the artist of her organs..." Includes accented drones, rolled vowels, "wet" consonant sounds
4 0:48 "MONDAY from LIGHT" Includes voiceless colored noise (aleatory rhythm), combination timbre of tongue clicks, kissing noises, whispers, toneless voice with a rising/falling gliss figure
5 1:09 "Ceremony of admiration for the woman" Includes sequences of rising/falling noise glissandi, modulating vowel-drones
6 1:01 "Who in our Universe..." Includes combination timbres of whispering-whistled notes, breathing rhythms, half-voiced (mysteriously), ending in a rising accent gliss, "EVA, akka, esa, jana"
7 1:00 "We sing to you EVE" Head voice/mouth closed -  increasing density (staccato/legato sub-division)
8 2:20 "EVA, MONDEVA, INANNA" More complex individual group sub-divisions (layering, solos, etc…), dynamic modulation, ending on rolled vowels


www.karlheinzstockhausen.org)
Scene 2 - BEFRUCHTUNG mit KLAVIERSTÜCK
(Conception with Piano Piece)
     The women call forth the now-grown Budgerigar-Boy from the first Act, who arrives playing a stretched-out grand piano and parks it between the giant EVE's legs.  The pianist plays a solo accompanied by the humming of the lily blossom girls.

The piano part can be performed independently as KLAVIERSTÜCK XIV (GEBURTSTAGS-FORMEL).
Trk Dur. Title Girls' choir in 9 parts Piano, 3 Synthesizers Tape
9 1:17 "Come, Aimard!" Come Amant! ("lover" in French, or "Aimard", the pianist's name in the recording) 
Fertilize EVE for the 2nd Birth-giving!


Synths 2 & 3 drone on G, F# throughout







Sound Scene 16: Zoo birdhouse, parakeet, audience laughter, band (at 0:34)
10 4:59 Klavierstück (Piano piece) Girls' choir and Synth 1 elaborate on the MICHAEL formula using wordless text. Pianist ("penist"?) performs (sometimes with voice or playing piano strings) an elaboration on the EVE, MICHAEL and LUCIFER formulas (some E/L fragments are inverted). 
"1, 2, 3, 4, 5, sex!"


Scene 3 - WIEDERGEBURT (Re-Birth)
     The bird-pianist drives away and the women begin boiling water.  7 boys are born, each named for a day of the week (Monday-boy, Tuesday-boy, etc...)

Text excerpts:
     "EVE mother, we your children entreat: give us a Monday-boy...(etc..)."
     "Thank you Mother of the World for the second birth from LIGHT."
Trk Dur. Title Girls' choir in 9 parts 3 Synthesizers Tape
11 0:44 Baby - "Lun mun dun..." Girls' and taped female choir (and Synth 1) sing lively harmony in rhythm with Indian drums Synths 2, 3 drone on G, F# throughout Sound Scene 17: baby gurgle, laughter, Indian drum dance
12 0:30 Synthesizer Prelude Female laughter Synths play drone and then brief harmony figure
13 0:29 Monday Boy Repetition of beginning of Trk 2 ("Eve mother, we your children jubilate") with some additional vocal colorations
(A boy is born at the end of each section.)
Synth 1 shadows the girls' choir
Synths 2 and 3 play supportive held chords, sometimes with glissandi




















14 0:11 Tuesday Boy Repetition of beginning of Trk 3 with ending shouts
15 0:13 Wednesday Boy Repetition of beginning of Trk 4 with ending hummed glissandi harmony
16 0:34 Thursday Boy Repetition of beginning and ending of Trk 5 with some variations
17 0:19 Friday Boy Harmony with some "yodeled" leaps
18 0:31 Saturday Boy Repetition of 2nd half of Trk 7 with some rhythmic sub-division
19 1:25 "...procreate...Sunday children..." Repetition of Trk 8 
("Eva, Mondeva, Inanna")
20 0:47 "Thank you Mother of the World" Girls' choir and synths are united in a harmony figure

EVA's LIED features the LICHT super-formula with its 19 measures divided into 7 sections, one for each day of the week.   
The LICHT Super-formula segments for each day. Click to enlarge.
www.karlheinzstockhausen.org)

www.karlheinzstockhausen.org)
SCENE 4 - EVAs LIED (EVE's Song)
     A Coeur de Bassett (basset horn player) in the shape of a heart emerges from the giant EVE's chest.  She teaches each boy a song (each day of the week has it's own song).
3 more versions of EVE's basset horn players emerge from the giant EVE statue (from each breast and its womb).  They are named Busi, Busa and Muschi.  The play with the boys seductively.  At the same time a giant, standing EVE-spirit begins to light up.  During INITIATION the standing EVE figure begins to dance.  Eventually the 7 boys, the basset horn players and the giant EVE-spirit all disappear behind the sitting EVE statue, as playful erotic noises fade away.

Text sample from WOCHENKREIS songs:
"MONDAY - moonlight (hot is the start of the week...) - EVE-day - birth of the Children...rushing, courage, green silver-green - Soprano - water - smelling...Ceremony and Magic"
"TUESDAY - Mars-light (bang! bang!) Day of War LUCIFER-MICHAEL - Yelling, bravery, Red - Trumpet and Trombone...(etc...)"
Trk Dur. Title Boy Soloists, basset horns, soprano soloist (with basset horn) 3 Synthesizers Tape
21 3:44 COEUR DE BASSET

After Sound Scene 18, and a synthesizer overture, "Coeur", a basset horn figure, plays EVE nuclear tones (mostly head motif) using microtonal interval scales and intermittent "yodeled" leaps

Synths 1 & 2 play polyphonic material derived from the LICHT super-formula, sometimes with bubbling or sizzling timbres.

Synth 3 plays varying "dreamy" drone timbres and a few subtle figures

(intermittent percussion strikes)






















































































Sound Scene 18: "Oh EVE!", ship's horn, clock-chime




22 0:41 WOCHENKREIS (DIE 7 LIEDER DER TAGE):  Monday Prelude In the Preludes, songs and interludes, Coeur plays measures from the EVE, MICHAEL and LUCIFER formulas assigned to that day, but in different sequences for each day.  For example, in Monday Song 1, the sequence is EVE's 1st 3 measures, then MICHAEL'S 1st 3 measures, and then LUCIFER's 1st 3 measures. 

In the Tuesday group, the order in Song 1 is MICHAEL's 4th & 5th measures, LUCIFER's 4th & 5th measures, and then EVE's 4th & 5th measures.  The other Songs for each Day follow suit.  In the 2nd Song of each Day, a boy soloist "learns" the basset horn's part, and the basset horn takes on a supportive role.

In this process, the Coeur de Basset traverses all 3 layers the LICHT super-formula, and each boy learns his day's super-formula layers.




























Sound Scene 19: Baby, whistle, explosion, cuckoo clock
23 0:45 Monday Song 1 During Preludes, female choir chords (tape) surface from time to time
24 0:44 Monday Song 2
25 0:41 Tuesday Prelude
26 0:34 Tuesday Song 1
27 0:14 Tuesday Interlude Sound Scene 20: man shouts, shots, woman laughs
28 0:32 Tuesday Song 2
29 0:50 Wednesday Prelude
30 0:37 Wednesday Song 1
31 0:42 Wednesday Song 2
32 0:34 Thursday Prelude Sound Scene 21: Cuckoo Clock (5 strikes), car race, door slam, seal bark
33 0:43 Thursday Song 1
34 0:38 Thursday Song 2
35 0:28 Friday Prelude
36 0:48 Friday Song 1
37 0:51 Friday Interlude
38 0:49 Friday Song 2
39 0:15 Saturday Prelude
40 0:44 Saturday Song 1
41 0:22 Saturday Interlude
42 0:42 Saturday Song 2
43 0:41 Sunday Prelude Sound Scene 22: Car, "Take seven", "Well, well", heartbeats
(at 0:23)
44 1:03 Sunday Song 1
45 1:14 Sunday Interlude
46 1:08 Sunday Song 2
47 1:29 BASSETTINEN (Basset-Teases) As Coeur navigates through the formulas (sometimes with inverted and/or backwards fragments), each boy sings a brief figure from their song (from Monday to Sunday), with Sunday having all 7 boys contribute.  Coeur intermittently plays synchronously with the boy soloist. Sound Scene 23: Dog howls, plates, dog bark, barrel-organ





48 1:26 Busi Arrives "Busi", another basset horn arrives and plays in parallel with Coeur.  Mon thru Friday boys sing and then together: "BUSI!...".
49 3:03 Busa Arrives "Busa", another basset horn plays in parallel with Busi and Coeur (and then duo with Coeur).  Monday thru Thursday boys sing and then together: "BUSA!...", then after Sound Scene 24, Mon-Wed, then again in harmony, sometimes clapping. Sound Scene 24: 2 train toots, explosion, fairground music
(at 1:23)

 
50 3:34 Muschi Appears "Muschi" arrives, who sings (sometimes using her basset horn as a resonating tube) with Coeur and Busi, and then later Busa joining.  The boys greet "MUSCHI!..."
51 1:46 INITIATION The basset horns (with Muschi singing through her basset horn), 7 boys and Synths 1 & 2 play a harmony phrase structure.  

Synth 3 elaborates on the LUCIFER formula in a low, vocal timbre.
Sound Scene 25: Orchestrion (orchestral pipe organ), sea lion, water splashing, duck, baby crying, sheep
52 0:39 Monday Dance Each Song of the Week is reinterpreted as a layered harmony featuring Muschi in the lead voice (supported by the basset horns) and the 7 boys singing longer figures.


























The Sunday Dance features fragmented conversation between Busi, Busa, Muschi as Coeur and the boys sing longer held tones.  The scene ends with playful "erotic" sounds  (Muschi: "You little piglet!", Boy: "Turn off the lights!") and a slowing horn tremolo.
Synths 1 and 2 play a variety of figures and structures (probably from the EVE and/or MICHAEL formulas).

Synth 3 continues the LUCIFER formula, forwards, then (semi-) backwards, then forwards, etc…, at the same time playing an extremely slow rising gliss.



























Sound Scene 26: pig squeals, woman laughs
(at 0:16)
53 0:44 Tuesday Dance
54 0:38 Wednesday Dance
55 0:49 Thursday Dance Sound Scene 27: Man & woman erotic gasps, fairground bell
56 1:23 Friday Dance Sound Scene 28: steel scythe is sharpened, woman calls

Sound Scene 29: woman laughs, car door slams, ignition, car brakes screech, (pigs squeal)
(at 0:48)
57 1:16 Saturday Dance Sound Scene 30: Man & woman erotic moan, pneumatic drill, explosion, "Good God!" 
(at 0:51)
58 5:52 Sunday Dance Sound Scene 31: electronic sound with parrot, parrot laughs, thunder, "Oh my, oh my!"
(at 1:10)

Score
MÄDCHEN PROZESSION Pg 1, featuring 9 parts for girls' choir and Synth 2 and 3 parts.
The girls' choir is organized in 3 groups, Right, Middle, Left (1, 2, 3). (my coloring, not original)
(score© www.karlheinzstockhausen.org)


"Monday Song" for High voice and piano (or other chordal instrument)
(score© www.karlheinzstockhausen.org)

Notes on some extracts:
DIE 7 LIEDER DER TAGE (The 7 Songs of the Days) No. 57 3/4 Extract 1 for soloist and chordal instrument [9']
WOCHENKREIS (Circle of the Week) No. 57 3/4 Extract 2 for basset-horn and synthesizer [25'30"] 
     DIE 7 LIEDER DER TAGE includes the 7 songs of the week only.  WOCHENKREIS includes all sections from the beginning of EVAs LIED to before BASSETTINEN, and adds an exit section.

Sound Impressions
     In the second Act of MONTAG AUS LICHT, a sudden return to primitivism seems to occur when the electricity goes out and the stage is lit only with candles, as a ritualistic procession moves up the aisles.  The girls' choir is yet another beautiful choral work in MONTAG, and the 3 against 4 nature of the rhythms continues a structural concept from the opposing shapes of the previous act's Boy's Hullabaloo.  The "conception" piano solo is a fine melding of unique textures, as there are not very many works for piano and children's choir.  It has some structural similarity to KLAVIERSTÜCK XIII "LUCIFER's Dream", but is much more concise and gets "down to business" so to speak.  

     WOCHENKREIS generates a new set of lively songs which I think have as much life as independent songs as TIERKREIS does away from MUSIK IM BAUCH.  The 7 songs are each lots of fun and are perfectly fit for children to sing.  INITIATION features an alluring vocal for soprano which has many fascinating colorations and is a wonderful showcase for Kathinka Pasveer's singing skills.  At this point in MONTAG, the synthesizers also take on a more prominent role, and I would someday be curious to hear some sections of EVE's Song as electronic parts separate from the opera (perhaps as study tracks for 3 keyboardists).  The interaction between the 4 incarnations of EVE as COEUR, BUSI, BUSA and MUSCHI are weaved together in a fascinating layering of wind and voice instruments.  In the final section of EVE's Song, the forces become quite entangled, but yet still imply a certain kind of harmoniousness. Just as in Act 1's First Birth-Giving, there is alot of humor laced throughout these acts, but in a somewhat more innocent, child-like way than in the earlier Act.

     The score also describes very precise hand gestures for each of the boy soloists, as well as many descriptions of color and lighting changes which unfortunately can't be experienced on an audio recording.  The stage set is also decorated with many additional glass "chemistry lab" vials and tubes, which are used to collect water from the boiling steam and use it to grow a beautiful grass lawn by the end of the Act.  "Stockhausen - Lichtwerke", a color documentary on the making of MONTAG AUS LICHT (available on DVD) has many scene excerpts from EVAs ZWEITGEBURT (and the other Acts as well).  A lower quality, slightly edited version is also on YouTube.

Links
Sound samples and CD ordering

EVAs ERSTGEBURT

MONTAG AUS LICHT
Greeting
MONTAGs-
GRUSS
Act 1
EVAs ERSTGEBURT
Act 2
EVAs ZWEITGEBURT
Act 3
EVAs ZAUBER
Farewell
MONTAGs
ABSCHIED

Score Cover (© www.karlheinzstockhausen.org)
 No. 56: EVAs ERSTGEBURT
(EVE's First Birth-Giving) for 3 sopranos, 3 tenors, bass, vocal actor, choir (GEBURTS-FEST, live or tape), boys’ choir, 3 synthesizers, percussion, tape (Sound Scenes), staged with 21 actresses

The First Act of
MONTAG AUS LICHT (MONDAY from LIGHT)
1987 [93 min]

Additional Works:
No. 56 Extract 1: GEBURTS-FEST (Festival of Birth)
for Choir with tape (Sound Scenes) [68'30"]
Separately as:
  • QUELLE DES LEBENS (Spring of Life): extract from IN HOFFNUNG / HEINZELMÄNNCHEN / Erste & Zweite GEBURTS-ARIE [38'30"]
  • KINDERSPIEL (Child's Play): extract from KNABENGESCHREI [19']
  • TRAUER MIT HUMOR (Lament with Humor): extract from DAS GROSSE GEWEINE [approx. 11'30]
No. 56 1/2, 2/3 (ie 56.2, 56.3): IN HOFFNUNG (Expecting), HEINZELMÄNNCHEN [27']
     No. 56 1/2 Extract 1: FLAUTINA for flute, piccolo and alto flute [6']
No. 56 3/4 (ie 56.4): GEBURTS-ARIEN (Birth Arias) [17']
     No. 56 3/4 Extract 1: Erste GEBURTS-ARIE (1st Birth Aria) [9']
     No. 56 3/4 Extract 2: Zweite GEBURTS-ARIE (2nd Birth Aria) [9']
No. 56 4/5 (ie 56.5): KNABENGESCHREI (Boy's Hullabaloo) [26']
No. 56 5/6 (ie 56.6): LUZIFERs ZORN (Lucifer's Fury) [22']
No. 56 6/7 (ie 56.7): DAS GROSSE GEWEINE (The Great Weeping) [10'30]

Introduction
     EVAs ERSTGEBURT (EVE's First Birth-Giving) is the 1st Scene of Stockhausen's dramatic music work MONTAG AUS LICHT (MONDAY from LIGHT), which was the 3rd-composed entry of his 7-part, 29-hour opera cycle LICHT (LIGHT).  LICHT is a work for acoustic and electronic operatic forces, divided into the 7 days of the week (one opera for each day).  This opera cycle revolves around 3 archetype characters, MICHAEL, EVE and LUCIFER, and over the 29 hours each of these characters are introduced, come into conflict, face temptation and finally come into union.  The music is almost entirely based on a "super-formula", which is a 3-layered melodic-thematic representation of the 3 characters.  These formula-themes are together and separately threaded throughout the opera's vocal and instrumental fabric.  Story-wise, actors and narrative can (and often do) change from scene to scene, and the libretto text is sometimes made up of non-traditional grammar (or even purely phonetic sounds).

     MONTAG (Monday) is EVE's Day and a celebration of birth and the rebirth of humanity.  The main element connected with MONTAG is water.  The 3 Acts in MONTAG AUS LICHT are EVAs ERSTGEBURT, EVAs ZWEITGEBURT (EVE's Second Birth-Giving) and EVAs ZAUBER (EVE's Magic), and they are preceded and followed by MONTAG'S GRUSS (Monday Greeting) and MONTAG's ABSCHIED (Monday Farewell) respectively.  In EVAs ERSTGEBURT, a giant EVE figure gives birth to 7 Animal-Boys and 7 Heinzelmännchen (gnomes), who are celebrated by a trio of EVE sopranos and and a trio of tenor "sailors".  However, after a reckless carriage race, LUCIFER arrives and expresses his disdain, commanding the children to return to the womb so that a 2nd birthing process can be attempted.  This Act has 6 Scenes:
  1. IN HOFFNUNG ("Expecting")
  2. HEINZELMÄNNCHEN (named after gnome-like creatures from Cologne folklore)
  3. Erste GEBURTS-ARIE & Zweite GEBURTS-ARIE ("1st and 2nd Birth Arias")
  4. KNABENGESCHREI ("Boy's Hullabaloo")
  5. LUZIFERs ZORN ("LUCIFER's Fury")
  6. DAS GROSSE GEWEINE ("The Great Weeping")
     The main soloists in EVAs ERSTGEBURT are a trio of sopranos and later, a boys' choir of 7 "animal-boys" and 7 mythical gnome-like creatures, known as "Heinzelmännchen".  Additionally, in the 3rd scene's "2nd Birth Aria", a tenor trio is featured, and in the 5th scene, "LUCIFER's Fury", a bass vocalist and a vocalizing actor are featured.  The 3 synthesizers mostly comment on and shadow the vocal elements, using drones and modulating timbres.  One of the synthesizers usually provides some additional static background environmental sounds, such as rushing water, the beach at dawn, raining, etc...  The percussionist has 28 "sound events" which he conceives himself and are semi-freely distributed throughout the Act.

     MONTAG AUS LICHT is the most choral-oriented of the first 3 LICHT operas.  In EVAs ERSTGEBURT there are parts for 3 choral groups: female choir (SA), male choir (TB), and children's choir (boys' voices).  In a stage production, the male and female choral parts, collectively known as GEBURTS-FEST, can be projected from an 8-track tape, similar to the way the choral UNSICHTBARE CHÖRE was projected for the staging of DONNERSTAG AUS LICHT.  GEBURTS-FEST is also similarly released on a separate CD (Stockhausen Edition 37).  Throughout the Act, 15 taped "Sound Scenes" (brief field recordings of nature, human voices, environments, animals, historical broadcasts, etc..) also surface which either provide the sound effect for a stage action, or comment on the proceedings, or both - usually to humorous effect.

Narrative:
       The stage production of EVAs ERSTGEBURT (and for all of MONTAG AUS LICHT for that matter) is very elaborate, and a text synopsis really can't do justice to all of the many rich visual elements.  The CD recording is an excellent studio representation of the opera's musical elements and so here I will mainly concentrate on that.  The booklet (book, actually) that comes with the MONTAG AUS LICHT CD has much more detailed descriptions, photographs, libretto and score excerpts.
      
     In the descriptions below I sometimes identify a structure as being based on the EVE, MICHAEL or LUCIFER formulas (or the EVE Nuclear formula), but in this particular Act this is somewhat more academic than readily audible on initial listens.  Unlike perhaps some of the scenes from DONNERSTAG and SAMSTAG AUS LICHT, seeing these melodies in their original form is I think less necessary (of course even in those operas, knowing the LICHT melodies is not required to enjoy them, they just make it easier to further appreciate certain motifs).  In any case, at this point in the LICHT opera cycle, one can probably just appreciate these "embryonic" formula versions on their own without reference to their original form.  However, the full formulas can be found on the page here on the LICHT super-formula.  In the next Act of MONTAG AUS LICHT, "2nd Birth-Giving", the "matured" formulas will take on a much more recognizable form.


(All photos on this page
© www.karlheinzstockhausen.org)
Scene 1: IN HOFFNUNG ("Expecting")
     A giant statue of EVE, sitting on a beach with her legs drawn up and facing away from the audience, is approached by a group of women who begin to prepare her (from head to foot) for a celebration of birth.  3 sopranos are positioned at the throat of the giant EVE.  Over 9 cycles several things occur: a searchlight pans across the sky, the women slowly turn EVE to face right, a moon arcs across the sky (waxing fuller each cycle), an image of an embryo projected in the sky matures, a glowing embryo between EVE's legs similarly matures, and the sky gradually turns to dawn.  In the 7th month a LUCIFER trombone and bass briefly flit across the scene before disappearing.  In the 9th month a women sets off an explosion between EVE's legs, and a train carrying 7 pairs of children's eyes in its windows flies across the sky through the projected embryo image.  During these 9 cycles the contours of the EVE formula develop through the singing of a female choir (mimed by the women washing and preparing the giant EVE statue).

Choir text sample (leaving out various names of cosmological beings, or "EVE's secret names"):
     "Holy be Eve...hot is the start of the week...Small is the Earth, small is her universe in the infinite number  of universes.  Thank you EVE, for your help at the first birth and the rebirth of Man.  We ask for a new paradise for the perfection of mankind.   GOD, you eternal immeasurable intelligence, beauty...You have manifested yourself in children.  We sing and play for YOU.  (etc...)"
Trk. Dur. Cycle Soprano Trio Choir Sound Scenes 3 Synthesizers
2 1:13 Central Pitches Staggered C pitches
(1st EVE tone)
Bass drones on G with modulating vowel timbres
(1st LUCIFER tone).

Seashore sounds begin and continue for the entire Act.

S3 plays EVE Nuclear tones.
3 1:13 Nuclear Formula Staggered E pitches
(2nd EVE tone)
SA (female choir): EVE Nuclear formula, glissandi S1 follows female choir.
S2 follows 3 sopranos.
S3 follows male choir.























4 1:01 1st Month In each of the 9 months, the sopranos polyphonically center around C and add ornamentation from brief EVE formula elements.







SA: In each month cycle, EVE formula fragments are sung with glissandi, tongue clicks, toneless singing, etc...  The fragments start ambiguously, and slowly develop until they "mature" in the 9th month.

TB (male choir): Tonal center on G with ornamentation and harmonization












A cock crows at the beginning of each Month.




















5 1:09 2nd Month
6 1:18 3rd Month
7 1:24 4th Month
8 1:34 5th Month
9 1:38 6th Month
10 1:51 7th Month (Brief interjection of Trombone and LUCIFER: "Abortion!")
11 1:49 8th Month
12 1:59 9th Month Sound Scene 1: cock crows, explosion, train sound, etc (0:54)



Scene 2: HEINZELMÄNNCHEN
     In 5 tidal waves, 7 "animal-boys" are produced from between EVE's legs.  Each "birth" is accompanied by a Sound Scene and related imagery projected in the sky.  When a Budgerigar-Boy (parakeet-boy) is born, he mimes playing the piano (which will be very useful in Act 2).  After the animal boys have all come out, a typhoon horn (synth) is blown a few times.  During a brief thunderstorm, 7 boy Heinzelmännchen (gnomes) tumble out of EVE's womb.  The women whisper "LUCIFER!" when they see a shadowy figure, who seemingly judges the boys "repulsive", before disappearing.  Musically, the 3 sopranos are featured in this scene in a lively polyphonic exploration of the Monday pitches from the EVE formula.

1st Soprano trio text sample:
     "Hahahaleo leo swallos Schwalben leo Mohonday haleo horse Parrot love-bird rondini horse parrot bird of paradise wau!  Monday's children!"
Trk. Dur. Birthing Cycle Soprano Trio, Choir and Synthesizers Sound Scenes
13 1:02 Lion Boy The 3 sopranos polyphonically sing 3 layers of fast, rhythmic figures (ascending 1 semitone each birthing) based on notes of the EVE formula (especially the Monday limb, the first formula phrase).  During each tidal cycle, the tempo slows down and then speeds up.  

Drones and long tones from the choirs and synths recede and then swell.  Beach sounds continue throughout.

When the "parrot-boy" arrives, the sopranos briefly sing in unison, "papa...papagei..Paradies-wau!".
Sound Scene 2: lion roar, fireworks, glass shattering, etc
14 1:59 Swallow Twins Sound Scene 3: roller-coaster sounds, fireworks, "typhoon-horn"
15 2:39 Horse Lad Sound Scene 4: fairground sounds ("Try your strength!"), horse neighing, etc
16 3:12 Parrot, Budgerigar, Dog Sound Scene 5: brass fanfare, parrot, birds, dog bark, etc.
17 1:46 7
Heinzel-männchen

Sopranos each sing 1 long E note

 





Choirs and synths dialogue with the EVE head motif ("typhoon horn")

Finally, the women whisper: "LUCIFER..!".
LUCIFER responds: "Repulsive..".
Sound Scene 6: "My God, am I tired!" (Dutch), rain storm, baby laugh









 

Scene 3a: Erste GEBURTS-ARIE ("1st Birth Aria")
     As the women make the 7 Animal-Boys and 7 boy Heinzelmännchen comfortable, the 3 sopranos thank Heaven for the birth of the 2 sets of boys and give them names.  This scene gives the 3 sopranos tandem but individual solos based on the LICHT super-formula.

Sopranos text sample (leaving out wordplay and various names of cosmological beings):
     "Thanks to EVE for two times seven boys...Musical celebration in memory of the painful birth of man, the monstrosity before rebirth, the bastards before the angels...(humorously:) lion-boy - the dullness before the truth, the monstrous before the beauty, the deafness before the musicality...  Sagittarius - Horse-lad - Riding man..."

(Naming the Heinzelmännchen boys:)
     "Mock - Dick - Mick - Dock - Frick - Sack - Sock!  
Little Monday's man, little Tuesday's man, little Wednesday's man (etc..)"
Trk. Dur. Formula Soprano Trio Choir 3 Synthesizers
1 1:47 Segment 1 Sopranos each elaborate on one of the three LICHT formulas:
Sopr. 1 (Center) EVE
Sopr. 2 (L) MICHAEL
Sopr. 3 (R)  LUCIFER
(including colored pauses and toneless noises).







The Heinzel-männchen boys address the audience in Segment 6 ("our Highly Honoured Audience…")
Female choir sings long tones or rests, sometimes commenting on the sopranos.

Male choir sings low drones and held tones with crescendi / decrescendi.















Synth 1 shadows Sopr. 2
Synth 2 shadows Sopr. 1
Synth 3 shadows Sopr. 3

Sounds of a swallow are heard at Segment 2 (a few other brief "natural" sounds are mixed in with the sounds of the surf).















2 0:41 Segment 2 
3 0:36 Segment 3 
4 0:55 Segment 4 
5 0:49 Segment 5 
6 1:48 Segment 6 
7 1:42 Segment 7 


Scene 3b: Zweite GEBURTS-ARIE ("2nd Birth Aria")
     As the women tease the children, 3 tenor sailors arrive from the sea bearing food, drink and a swan.  After a celebration, they free the swan and sail off, throwing kisses.  This scene features an exciting 3-part harmony from the tenors.

Tenor trio text sample:
     "Urd uru - urturu - Geburt - uru - urukete - tukete - lachetu - tukete - lachetu - Urd - Werdani - ninini - ruketu - Urt - Werdani " (etc...)
Trk. Dur. Formula Tenor Trio, Soprano Trio, Choir Sound Scenes 3 Synthesizers
8 0:54 Greeting The women clap and gleefully greet the arriving sailors (tenor trio) Sound Scene 7: turkey gobble, sheep, champagne cork pop (at 0:47) Beach sounds continue throughout.
9 0:55 Segment 1 In these 7 formula segments, the tenors sing lively, rhythmic harmony phrases in dialogue with brief chordal phrases from the male and female choir groups (soprano soloists sing with the female choir).
Segment 1 ends with a rising male choir figure.

Synth 1 shadows Female Choir

Synth 2 shadows Tenor Trio

Synth 3 shadows Male Choir




















10 0:35 Segment 2  Features mainly tenor trio.
11 0:31 Segment 3  Soft female choir glissandi and tenor trio rolled vowels.
12 0:49 Segment 4  Tenor trio with a few brief female glissandi, ending with male choir long tones and rolled vowels
13 0:44 Segment 5  Tenor trio "spits water into the air".
Slow chordal female vocals and male choir glissandi with rhythmic chanting at the end. 
14 0:38 Segment 6  Slow, then fast tenor trio rhythms.
Slow female/male choir chords.
15 1:25 Segment 7  Lively tenor trio rhythms with slow, swelling choir and more prominent synth parts
16 3:11 Farewell The soprano trio and the tenor trio engage in a duet, at first with short phrases (sometimes as solo singers), and then eventually ending in a tutti harmony (no choir). Synth 1 shadows sopranos,
Synth 2 and 3 play modulating drones and twittering.



Scene 4: KNABENGESCHREI ("Boy's Hullabaloo")
     As the women and the animal-boys tease each other, a huge cow being milked appears in the sky.  The children are all then given milk bottles and put in beach carts (strollers).  After a "formation" is called, the 2 groups of children are raced around the beach in 2 courses (Animal-Boys in a left-right line with a square circuit, Heinzelmännchen boys in a front-back line in a triangular circuit).  Several STOPS (compositional "inserts") are made where the "pram dance" is paused to admire the sea, eat bananas, carrots and corn, praise EVE, and urinate.  During the pram-dance "rotations", the tempo gradually increases, and finally the "pram-race" ends in a tangled crash.  An ice cream vendor appears and brings some relief.

Bass "sea chanty" text sample (various excerpts):
     "Rush, o sea in my ear:  How did EVE bear seven animal children and seven Heinzelmännchen?  Ocean, why did you beget them as boys?  Three sailors brought you by the sea, scent, fruits, juices and flower bouquets...
Women, children turn in circles, sing, cry: Three sailors, come back again!  Fruits, juices for the women and for the children...for the EVE-children. (etc...)"

     The tempos in column 3 below are derived from my calculated "normalization" of the note values in the score and not the printed tempos (there, when the tempo is very slow or very fast, the score note values are doubled or halved, etc..).
Trk. Dur. Rotation
& Approx.
Tempo
Soprano Trio Choir Children's Choir Sound Scenes /
3 Synthesizers
17







2:23







Cries







Lion-boy "roars". 
Females gasp and laugh, making kissing noises. 

After Sound Scene 8, the members of the boys' choir imitate cow moos, cries, roars, chirps, etc.
The Sopranos call "Formation" 3 times.



Sound Scene 8: 5 baby cries, 7 cow moos, Chinese gong (at 0:36)

Synths modulate and drone or accent animal sounds.

Beach sounds continue throughout. 
18 1:38 Baby
Buggy
Boogie
Slow inhalations (by soloists) separate 2 layers of female chorus glissandi, 1 rising and 1 falling.
Soprano trio and boys' choir shadow the female choir (with and without glissandi).
Synths shadow parts of the choir and soloists, usually with drones fading and out, as well as long tones and some glissandi
























































































Pram Dance begins
(at 1:01)



Sopranos: "Baby Buggy Boogie!"
All choir groups and soloists (except basses) sing in a 4:3 rhythmic ratio:

4/4: Soprano choir, 1 soprano soloist, Animal-boys
3/4: Alto & Tenor choirs, 2 soprano soloists, Heinzelmännchen

The SAT choir groups sing in rhythm using held tones separated by loud (solo) inhalations.  
Animal-boys sing with held tones, falling gliss, staccato, vibrato, etc..) using their "imitated animal voice"
Basses sing a "seamen's chant" (w. "American dialect"), independently of the 4:3 rhythm (based on cycled elaborations of the EVE Nuclear formula, continuous until "Peepee Stop").
Var. metal percussion sounds from time to time

Tempo slowly increases for each Rotation starting from 21 bpm.
19 0:34 Rotation 1
[21 BPM]
20 0:33 Rotation 2
[23]
21 0:30 Rotation 3
[23.5]
22 0:29 Rotation 4
[24]
Sopranos pause to sing: "Beautiful is the Sea"
23 0:27 Rotation 5
[26]
Resume as before


24 0:27 Rotation 6
[28]
25 0:46 Banana STOP Sopranos: (Out with the) "Bananas!"
SA choir groups pause, then isolated unison glisses
Children make individual animal noises
(basses continues sea chant)
26 0:22 Rotation 7
[33]

SAT, children: resume 4:3 rhythmic texture, SA now adding glissandi

(basses continues sea chant)







27 0:20 Rotation 8
[36]
28 0:19 Rotation 9
[38]
29 0:18 Rotation 10
[40]
30


1:03


Carrot STOP


Sopranos: "Carrot's for the journey!...Ears of corn, corncob food!"
S sing harmony figure w. glisses
TA in 4:4 rhythm
Children make individual animal noises, glissandi, etc
(basses continues sea chant)
31 0:14 Rotation 11
[54]
Resume 4:3 as before, tempo increasing

(basses continues sea chant)







32 0:13 Rotation 12
[57]
33 0:12 Rotation 13
[60]
34


0:42


Promenade STOP


Sopranos: "Beautiful is EVE…"
S: aleatory repeating 9-pitch texture, ending in slow falling gliss
TA: 4:4
Children make individual animal noises, glissandi, etc
(basses continues sea chant)
35 0:18 Rotation 14
[80/85]
SA - Resume 4:3, increasing tempo, inhalations less frequent (only 1 for 3 sung tones).  Soprano soloists add falling glissandi

(basses continues sea chant)















At end of Rotation 19 the Heinzelmännchen begin shouting numbers (and a woman yells "Stop! Stop!",  not audible on CD)
36 0:15 Rotation 15
[90/95]
37 0:14 Rotation 16
[101/107]
38 0:12 Rotation 17
[114/120]
39 0:11 Rotation 18
[127/134]
40 0:10 Rotation 19
[142/151]
41


2:43


Peepee STOP


Low male drone in choir.  Child cries.  Vocal water noises.
Toy whistle with paper strip, scissors (remote control cat)
After Sound Scene 9, sopranos sing military fanfare, ring bells, laugh
Sound Scene 9: goat-bleat ("parrot-like"), radio fanfare and announcement, "Ai!", whistled Marseillaise, ducks, etc.(at 1:13)
42 0:25 Rotation 20
[160>214]
Choir groups resume increasing tempo, inhalations less frequent (only 1 for 6 sung tones).
(basses continues sea chant through Rotation 23)









































Dense synth crescendo
43 0:17 Rotation 21
[226>302]
Continue, but with a pause in the middle (brief male choir solo).
44 0:20 Rotation 22
[212/
240>404]
Female choir, sopranos and children dramatically increasing tempo in polyphonic rhythm, different combinations of the vocal layers occur (brief pauses for single layers as other voices continue).


45 0:13 Rotation 23
[428>604]
46 0:09 Rotation 24
[640]
All choir groups in fast syncopated vocal figures (7 layers of SATB syncopated 16th notes, with 2 additional layers of male TB drones), tempo remains at ~640 bpm until "crash".


47 0:09 Rotation 25
48 0:09 Rotation 26 Brief male choir solo appears as female choir pauses (to inhale)
49 0:09 Rotation 27 Resume syncopated figures.

Different combinations of the vocal layers occur (brief pauses for single layers as the other voices continue).

(Rotation 29, 31 each have 1 inhalation).













50 0:09 Rotation 28
51 0:09 Rotation 29
52 0:09 Rotation 30
53 0:09 Rotation 31
54 0:09 Rotation 32
55 0:09 Rotation 33
56 2:08

Rotation 34,35, crash Crescendo, some screams and confusion begin as baby carriages fall over

"Ice Cream!" is given out. (not on CD)
57 0:45

"Rhodon-dendron" No vocals Sound Scene 10: otter-scream, power saw, falling tree, "Rhodo(n)dendron!"



Scene 5: LUZIFERs ZORN ("LUCIFER's Fury")
     LUZIPOLYP, a black "double-octopus", appears amidst the tangle of crashed baby strollers.  The 3 sopranos come down from EVE's shoulder and protect the children from this menacing being.  The LUZIPOLYP bass vocal soloist then begins celebrating the alphabet in a somewhat disturbed manner, shadowed by his "other half" (an actor vocalizing in even more bizarre styles).  The women and children shout protests at each alphabet letter.  Eventually the women bury LUZIPOLYP in the sand and protectively hide the children under their skirts.  This scene highlights "obscene" vocal gymnastics from the bass and actor.
Trk. Dur. Alphabet Bass soloist
and Vocal Actor
Female vocalists Children's Choir Sound Scenes /  
3 Synthesizers
58 3:31 LUZIPOLYP
Appears
LUZIPOLYP laughs and hisses, and the female vocalists (including sopranos) hiss back.  The children react with fear and trepidation.
LUZIPOLYP: "We sing, play...La...tsa...fa."
Synths play drones, chords and water sounds.  Synth 2 constantly changes timbre using the "vowel square" from STIMMUNG

(Synth 1 plays a chord at each letter and sometimes adds aural comments on LUZIPOLYP.)










59 0:27 a In 17 sections, LUZIPOLYP shouts out 17 letters of the alphabet (the independent version of LUZIFER's ZORN includes all 26 letters).

In between the alphabet letters, the bass vocalist sings and whistles strange LUCIFERIAN words (beginning with the next shouted letter until "o", then the previous letter), sometimes angrily, seductively, sarcastically, etc..  as the actor shadows him with animal-like sounds (cawing, gobbling, squawking, etc..).

("j" has an insert where LUCIPOLYP crawls around like a dog, and kicks sand)










During "z", LUZIPOLYP's exhortations are slowly stifled.
At each of LUCZIPOLYP's shouted letters, the soprano and/or alto choir groups shout a phrase of protest beginning with that letter, shadowing the bass vocal.

At the end of a 9th word there is a rising gliss.


 



 







At each of LUCZIPOLYP's shouted letters, the Animal-Boys or Heinzelmännchen shout a phrase of protest beginning with that letter, shadowing the bass vocal.

At the end of a 9th word there is a rising gliss.































60 0:21 b
61 0:27 c
62 0:26 d
63 0:13 e
64 0:45 f
65 0:18 g
66 0:35 h
67 0:22 i
68 3:28 j Sound Scene 11: Parliament delegates, bell, alarm, dog barks (at 2:46)
69 0:35 k
70 0:22 o, v
71 1:05 w After Sound Scene 12, the sopranos cry "Bury LUCIPOLYP!" and begin hissing at him, making angry threatening noises.

At "z", the women and children scream and bury LUZIPOLYP in the sand.
Sound Scene 12: alarm clock, "detetyrr!", historical military speech, toilet flush (at 0:11)
72 0:16 x
73 0:38 y
74 2:53 z
75 1:49 Soprano harmony
Sopranos sing in harmony: "Always, LUCIPOLYP spoils the game."
Synth 1 shadows sopranos, as other synth drones continue.



Scene 6: DAS GROSSE GEWEINE ("The Great Weeping")
     Everyone weeps because LUZIPOLYP has "spoiled the game".  However, during this weeping and raining, the Heinzelmännchen boys hiding under the skirts of several women begin to misbehave and cause mischief.  6 times a woman cries out and has to regain control over her errant Heinzelmännchen.  Umbrellas come out and move to the rhythm of the music.  Finally LUCIFER appears from the sea in a raincoat and then shortly afterwards the 1st Act of MONTAG AUS LICHT ends.

Soprano trio text sample:
     "LUCIFER's fury, LUCIFER's wrath against the women is LUCIFER's hate against MICHAEL.  The Great Weeping is Heaven's redemption, rain of the soul - TEAR-MUSIC..."

LUCIFER's text sample:
     "Mock Cock Mock - Dick Pick Mick - Mock Dick Pick - Mick Sick!...
Everyone back in!!  The whole thing again from the start!!!   Let's take a break!"
Trk. Dur. Section Soprano Trio, Choir, Synths Sound Scenes
76 1:13 1 Female choir sings slow glissandi with weeping and inhalation sounds, as male choir sings wavering drones. 
Sopranos sing harmony melody.
Pauses occur when one of the Heinzelmännchen boys "acts out".
The female choir makes voiced and toneless glisses as sounds of rain and bubbling sounds begin.  Isolated falling synth glisses begin and continue throughout.
Sound Scene 13: elephant trumpets, train, whistle (at 0:15)
77 2:09 2 Basses join the increasing weeping and sobbing glissandi sounds and another Heinzelmännchen causes a brief pause.  The choral wailing is mostly synchronous.
Female weeping becomes more pronounced.

78 2:05 3 After Sound Scene 14, female choir weeping becomes sequences of cyclic figures.  Male choir sing long tones with falling tail ends.  Sopranos continue as before.
A break occurs (fire caused by a Heinzelmännchen) and all begin spitting.
Sound Scene 14: hyena howl, dive bomber, explosion, erotic gasp (at 0:15)
79 0:49 4 Sounds of bells and a river (of tears) surface.   
Choir and sopranos sing glissando and held chords, followed by female gliss figures.  

80 0:40 5 Glissandi shouts from the female singers join the fairground sounds.

Sound Scene 15: otter cries, birdhouse, fairground sounds, baby sneeze
81 1:55 Choirs sing sad glissandi, inhalations, falling accents, as sopranos sing chord harmony.
LUCIFER (bass vocal soloist) appears and sings rhythmically and oddly, then counting 13 boys (he doesn't notice that the budgerigar-boy is missing, which will be important in Act 2).
Females sing falling glisses and fade out.

82 1:11 7 LUCIFER (in a solo) states that it must all begin again and that there will be a short break.


Score:
James Ingram's site (Stockhausen's former copyist) has some nice score samples, which I'll repost here:
A page from HEINZELMÄNNCHEN showing the lively polyphonic parts for the soprano trio in the middle staves.
www.karlheinzstockhausen.org)
A page from LUZIFERs ZORN showing LUZIPOLYP's double vocal gymnastics in the middle staves.
www.karlheinzstockhausen.org)

Additional Works:
GEBURTS-FEST (Festival of Birth) - choir part for EVAs ERSTGEBURT, with Sound Scenes (tape) - No. 56 Extract 1 [68'30"]
     The choir part of EVAs ERSTGEBURT is on Stockhausen CD 37 and has a slightly different track breakdown than on MONTAG AUS LICHT (Stockhausen CD 36).  It can also be performed as 3 shorter extracts:
QUELLE DES LEBENS (Spring of Life)
1: IN HOFFNUNG (begins with Bass overtone drone)
2: Nuclear tones
3: EVE Nuclear formula
4-18: 1st through 9th Month (Sound Scene 1 in track 16)
19 - 23: HEINZELMÄNNCHEN
24 - 27: Erste GEBURTS-ARIE
28 - 35: Zweite GEBURTS-ARIE
KINDERSPIEL (Child's Play) begins with "Baby Buggy Boogie" (skipping the "Cries" track) but otherwise has the choral elements and Sound Scenes from KNABENGESCHREI (Boy's Hullabaloo).
TRAUER MIT HUMOR (Lament with Humor) contains all of the choral elements and Sound Scenes from DAS GROSSE GEWEINE (The Great Weeping).

FLAUTINA for flute with piccolo and alto flute - No. 56 1/2 (ie - 56.2) Extract 1 [6']
     FLAUTINA was written as a birthday present for flautist Kathinka Pasveer.  In this work the performer uses the piccolo, flute and alto flute to play an expanded and elaborated version of the EVE formula, with intermittent sung or hummed passages while switching from instrument to instrument.  Just as KATHINKAS GESANG explored every facet of the LUCIFER formula, FLAUTINA expounds and magnifies aspects of the EVE formula over an expanded pitch register range.
     
Sound Impressions
     At its core,  EVAs ERSTGEBURT is a work for voice and electronics, but it obviously has larger forces at work than say, GESANG DER JÜNGLINGE (though both are equally complex in their own way).  As the 3rd opera written using the LICHT super-formula, the formulas themselves undergo more "melodic modulation" than in the first 2 operas, which is logical since DONNERSTAG and SAMSTAG had already clearly introduced them in their original forms.  In MONTAG, the formulas seem to be more at the service of the drama than ever before, and basically provide a more subtle textural through-line on which to weave this celebration of birth.

     The opening scenes feature some very accessible choral and solo vocal writing, which might surprise people more familiar with earlier works like MIKROPHONIE I, but it isn't long before the 1st Birth Aria provides a more "thorny" showcase for soprano trio.  The tenor trio in the 2nd Birth Aria is pure fun though, and sounds like Stockhausen's version of a barbershop quartet.  Boy's Hullabaloo is a tour-de-force of rhythmic layering, both compositionally and performance-wise - very few works go from 20 bpm to 640 bpm, I think.  The vocal acrobatics of LUZIPOLYP probably have certain things in common with the genre known as sound poetry, yet Stockhausen puts his own spin on it as a double-mirror of vowels, consonants, whistling and animal noises.  Alain Louafi's performance as the singing actor is positively hilarious and in fact seems to be doing an impression of 6 or 7 celebrity actors simultaneously - a really brilliant interpretation among a fantastic cast.

     In MONTAG AUS LICHT, the libretto really begins to deviate from normal grammar (which was very much in use for DONNERSTAG, though the dialogue was sometimes "contrapuntal" at times) and begins to explore phonetically-invented (or fragmented) words.  Stockhausen also begins using (in LICHT at least) many more names from global mythology and religion, which would eventually cultivate a kind of cottage industry of analyses focused on sourcing where these proper names came from.  Despite the seriousness of a birth scenario, this Act also has some of the funniest and most satirically-pointed moments of LICHT, of which a synopsis can only just hint at.  The score is well worth studying, just for all of the "jokes".  The CD comes with a very detailed description of the opera's actions and virtually the complete libretto, yet some things he saves as a surprise (which I won't spoil here!).  Of course one hopes for a live production to really experience this funny, tragic Act of high and low humor.  "Stockhausen - Lichtwerke", a color documentary on the making of MONTAG AUS LICHT (available on DVD) has many scene excerpts from EVAs ERSTGEBURT (and the other Acts as well).  A lower quality, slightly edited version is also on YouTube.

     The "invisible choir" of  QUELLE DES LEBENS is also a great listen, even more than I originally imagined it would be.  Because this act has such a dense sonic tapestry, it's not always easy to fully appreciate some of its supporting parts, and the choir part of EVAs ERSTGEBURT is definitely one of Stockhausen's most alluring vocal compositions.  Besides the beautiful consonances throughout the entire Act, in "Boy's Hullabaloo" the whirling nature of the 4:3 rhythm really comes through in the acapella "Child's Play" (KINDERSPIEL).