Moses and Aaron
(Moses und Aaron)
Erik Ulman, a composer and lecturer in music at Stanford University, writes on music, poetry, and film; he codirects, with Marcia Scott, the arts organization Poto.
Gunter Reich, Louis Devos, Roger Lucas,
Acclaimed as one of the best opera films ever made, this adaptation of Schoenberg’s 1930’s opus represented a labor of love for Straub-Huillet, taking over fifteen years to fund. A camera, a landscape (the Roman Alba Fucense amphitheater), and direct sound recording is all they need to portray the sweeping tale of Biblical belief and punishment, and its framing of the eternal battle between idea and form. A film adaptation simultaneously “minimal” and completely, overwhelmingly rich in ideas and emotion, Moses and Aaron “is a film in which every cut, every framing, every camera movement counts for so much” (New Yorker Films).
Introduction to Arnold Schoenberg’s “Accompaniment to a Cinematographic Scene”
(Einleitung zu Arnold Schönbergs Begleitmusik zu einer Lichtspielszene)
Jean-Marie Straub, Danièle Huillet, West Germany, 1972
Reading of composer Schoenberg’s 1923 prescient letter decrying the gathering fascist storm of his native Germany.