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NM 0170
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NM 0170

The Wandering Jew

The Classical Shop
release date: July 2011


BBC Symphony Orchestra

Andre de Ridder

BBC Singers


BBC Maida Vale Studios, London

18/19 Dec 2008 & 12-16 Oct 2009


Ann McKay


Neil Pemberton

Record Label




Total Time - 102:21
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The Wandering Jew

1 Scene 1, Part 1: A Nazi death camp during World War II 4:22
2 Scene 1, Part 2: Flashback to Jerusalem, 70AD 5:01
3 Interlude 1:55
4 Scene 2, The desert at night 5:01
5 Interlude 0:36
6 Scene 3, Part 1: The synagogue, Cordoba, Spain, 11th century 6:42
7 Scene 3, Part 2: The Ballad of the Wandering Jew 4:57
8 Scene 3, Part 3: An olive grove at night 7:09
9 Interlude 0:29
10 Scene 4: Auerbach's Cellar, Leipzig, 16th century 7:09
11 Interlude 2:37
12 Scene 5, Part 1: Wild terrain - Odin's rebirth 7:34
13 Scene 5, Part 2: Odin's three cries 5:41
14 Interlude 2:51
15 Scene 6, Part 1: Venice - Carnival, early 18th century 1:43
16 Scene 6, Part 2: Venice - the Wandering Jew encounters the Beggar/Jesus 2:52
17 Scene 6, Part 3: The Wandering Jew's Arioso and encounter with the Fortune Teller 5:29
18 Scene 6, Part 4: The Wandering Jew passes through the Carnival 2:56
19 Scene 6, Part 5: The Mystery Play 6:39
20 Interlude: Whirling through Time 1:10
21 Scene 7: The World War II death camp 14:32
22 Interlude 1:35
23 Scene 8: The desert in daylight 3:21

Robert Saxton: The Wandering Jew – Roderick Williams, BBC Singers, BBC Symphony Orchestra, André de Ridder

Saxton’s epic opera merges Christian and Jewish traditions in the myth of the eternal outsider, the Wandering Jew. Commissioned for broadcast by BBC Radio 3, the work features soloists including Roderick Williams, Tim Mirfin, Teresa Cahill, and Brindley Sherratt. The BBC Singers and BBC Symphony Orchestra are conducted by André de Ridder. Antony Pitts is responsible for the post-production.

‘The action shuttles through space and time, beginning in a Nazi death camp, going back to Jerusalem during the Roman occupation, then forward to Córdoba in the eleventh century and to the Venice carnival in the eighteenth, and including confrontations with Faust, Mephistopheles, Odin, and Kundry en route.’

The Guardian

Robert Saxton’s long-awaited radio opera, commissioned by the BBC, is a modernist take on the tale of the Wandering Jew - the shoe-mender condemned by Jesus to wander the Earth until the Second Coming after he refused to help him on his way to his Crucifixion. The opera introduces many legendary characters, following medieval and other myths, including Faust, Mephistoppheles, Kundry and Wotan. Underneath its surface lies a structure relating to the annual cycle of ewish and Christian festivals in eight scenes of sweeping orchestral and choral music, enhanced by studio post-production from Antony Pitts.

"...A near-exemplary presentation of a work that offers much of substance in its treatment of an age-old yet continually relevant narrative, and which anyone at all interested in English-language opera needs to hear."

Richard Whitehouse - International Record Review - October 2011

                           Performance ****           Recording ****

Martin Cotton - BBC Music magazine - September 2011

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