On their new album, the "double Florian" (FAZ) Florian Wäldele and Florian Dreßler consistently continue the work on their "concertante club music" and expand this style and the group's sound body with their first symphonic work composed by Florian Wäldele.
With Symphony No.1, they created a piano concerto in their very own "OHOHOH'schen" manner. Piano, large orchestra, vocals, contemporary beats, sampler and synthesizer are the elements of a composition at the interface between "U- and E-music".
The second part of the album consists of three versions and arrangements of the piece "Wunder". In addition to the original, there is a duet version with the countertenor Andreas Scholl and the Swiss soprano Maja Bader, as well as an arrangement by the pianist Tamar Halperin for string quartet, harpsichord and piano, written for her husband Andreas Scholl.
Through various cultural sponsorships during the Corona pandemic, THE OHOHOHS were able to use the time of the lockdown creatively and realise the long-cherished dream of a symphonic work. Florian Wäldele composed Symphony No.1 "Corona Symphony" from 2020 to 2022. The idea came from a lullaby for his son, a sustained melody in a minor key. Strings sound half asleep, accompanied by an undulating piano, an orchestra enters. Stirring string melodies follow, an almost Rachmaninoff-like piano, Yann Tiersen's minimalism, pumping club bass drums and sawing synthesizers, the way was paved for a symphonic work at the interface of E and U music. In the adagio of the 2nd movement, the soprano voice takes over the main motif and sings an arrangement of the poem "Corona" by Paul Celan (1920-1970), accompanied by drums and synthesizer arpeggios. In the 3rd movement (scherzo) things get classically wild, fast sequences of musical ideas are broken up by dubstep beats and lead to an almost Broadway-like climax before ending with the reprise of the main motif in a grand finale.
At the same time, The OHOHOHS realise a concert evening under the title "Pandemia - a musical vanitas", the highlight of which is the premiere of all three movements of the newly written "Corona Symphony". In "Pandemia" THE OHOHOHS explore music from pandemic times across history, from Alessandro Grandi to Verdi and Mozart to Queen and their own symphony. With the OMNIAstrings string orchestra, the soprano Maja Bader and the bass Frieder Gottwald, they brought the programme to the stage on 03.12.2022 in Frankfurt in the completely sold-out Katharinenkirche.
During the rehearsals for this concert evening, the symphony was recorded in order to release the work as an LP.
Tamar Halperin's comment after the premiere: "This is how I imagine attending a classical concert 200 years ago; I don't know what to expect and am surprised by new, unheard yet classical music."
On "Wunder", the old forms break and mix with contemporary R'n'B or the beat world of Two Step. A hybrid is born from the collision of almost classical, but no less driving piano passages and the electronic sounds. Various percussions (including a West African balafon) form a tension-filled rhythmic mesh. The basis of this composition is the examination of the music of the Baroque and the then popular form of the aria - one thinks of Pergolesi's "Stabat Mater" or Purcell's "Cold Song", which was made immortal by Klaus Nomi.
The text, performed in the original version by Swiss soprano Maja Bader, was written by pianist Florian Wäldele and his wife Lydia Galonska-Wäldele. Both were inspired in turn by Rio Reiser, Hölderlin and Rilke. In addition to the original version, the album features a duet version with countertenor Andreas Scholl and Swiss soprano Maja Bader. Another version is an arrangement by the pianist Tamar Halperin for string quartet, harpsichord, piano, also sung by Andreas Scholl.
Fotos von Andreas Mechmann und Boris Blumenthal.