The series were spanning several seasons in which Zoltán Kocsis and the Hungarian National Philharmonic performed rarely heard stage works by Richard Strauss at the Béla Bartók National Concert Hall arrived at its latest station in 2015. The interesting aspect of this latest concert, besides the rarity of the works, is that it featured two operas the composer wrote in 1938 that were originally intended to be performed side by side on the same programme. Political circumstances also had an impact on how the two 1938 works came into existence: after being classified as a persona non grata, Stefan Zweig was unable to continue working on the libretto alongside the composer and, at his own suggestion, was replaced by Joseph Gregor. First staged in the Opera House in Budapest in the 1939/40 season, Daphne appears somewhat more often on the world’s opera stages than Friedenstag. The performance of one of Strauss’s most lyrical works – subtitled a ‘Bucolic Tragedy in One Act” – is nevertheless still a cause for celebration for both Strauss fans and lovers of quality music in general.
This recording was made at the concert held at Müpa Budapest on 3 October 2015.