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Het Collectief, Katrien Baerts

Don’t touch me

Ferruccio Busoni, Alexander von Zemlinsky, Arnold Schönberg

The mysterious Mélisande with her incredibly long hair, from Maeterlinck’s well-known stage play made her way into the minds of many a composer around 1900. 

Even Arnold Schoenberg was charmed and wrote a stunning score about her eccentric love for Pelléas. The music basks in the sultry sensuality of the Viennese fin-de-siècle, balancing along the precipices of human emotion. 

Taking you towards the abyss is Ferruccio Busoni’s refined Berceuse élégiaque, as well as the fascinating song cycle of Maeterlinck poems set by Alexander von Zemlinsky.

Het Collectief specialises in Viennese music from around 1900. For this programme, the ensemble took inspiration from a technique Schoenberg often practiced himself: rewriting large-scale orchestral works for a smaller ensemble, in this case about twenty musicians. 

The new version preserves the original’s rich sound palette, while at the same time bringing out the sophistication of the music all the more. 

Katrien Baerts will join the ensemble for the Zemlinsky songs; her incredible array of timbres makes her the dream performer to bring out the music’s tiniest nuances.

Lise Bruyneel has designed an intimate video to accompany Schoenberg’s wordless work. The video both shows the narrative thread and reinforces the sense of mystery in Maeterlinck’s piece.

Opening concert of the academic year KU Leuven
 Peeters drukkerij / uitgeverij / boekhandel

Mon 25 Sep 2023 · 20:30
Aula Pieter De Somer




Pauline Driesen (Dutch only)



F. Busoni: Berceuse élégiaque

A. von Zemlinsky: Maeterlinck-Lieder

A. Schönberg: Pelleas und Melisande

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