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The Soldiers Tale – Centennial Celebration

Classical Sundays - Reykjavík Chamber Orchestra

Þessi viðburður er liðinn

In the first concert of the season, the Reykjavik Chamber Orchestra performs The Soldiers Tale by Igor Stravinsky, narrated by Jóhann Sigurðarson and conducted by Bjarni Frímann Bjarnason.
The piece was premiered in Lausanne, Switzerland 100 years ago on the 28th of september 1928.

The piece was composed by Stravinsky to the original french text by C.F. Ramuz which is based on an old Russian folk tale and Þorsteinn Valdimarsson made the Icelandic translation. The soldier Joseph is on his way home for a short leave. On the way he sits down to play his violin when the Devil appears disguised as an old man and offers him a bargain; In exchange for Joseph’s violin, the Devil will give him a book that brings the owner who knows how to handle it, endless wealth. Joseph agrees, but soon realizes that wealth does not bring him happiness. He gets rid of the book and buys the violin back, but his dealings with the Devil are far from being over.

The theme of the story, that all the material wealth in the world won’t buy you happiness is just as true today as it was one hundred years ago when the piece  was premiered.