Out of Darkness

Year
2013
Composers

In Out of Darkness, Jake Heggie and Gene Scheer accomplish something remarkable. They convey the vastness of the Holocaust’s scope through emotionally rich portraits of those caught in its grasp, without reducing them to caricatures of martyrdom. The three chapters of this work relate stories that offer compelling musical witness to survival in the face of unimaginable adversity. Another Sunrise tells the amazing story of Krystyna Zywulska who, after being captured as a member of the Polish resistance, created poems and songs in Auschwitz that circulated secretly and became anthems of defiance among her fellow prisoners. Farewell, Auschwitz adapts Krystyna’s lyrics, with their exhortations to preserve a sense of humanity in a place defined by inhuman behavior. The deeply-moving song cycle For a Look or a Touch illuminates Nazi persecution of homosexuals, informing historical realities through an intensely intimate story of memory and loss.

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"This is a disc to savour and return to for the beauty of the music, for the excellence of the performances and - most of all - for the message. Never forget the sufferings of millions of innocent people."

- Göran Forsling, MusicWeb International

"Heggie's settings are sometimes spare and anguished, sometimes lyrical and soaring, and full of the hope and suffering conveyed by Scheer's libretti."

- Melinda Bargreen, The Seattle Times