German Women's Jazz Orchestra: "Wagner in America"

May 30, 2013 | Washington, DC

Concert starts at 7pm
Admission is free but registration is required.

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Angelika Niescier Enlarge image Angelika Niescier, composer and leader of the German Women's Jazz Orchestra (© A. Niescier)

The  German Women’s Jazz Orchestra will perform at the National Museum of Women in the Arts.

The 12-member Jazz Orchestra consists of current and former members of the German State Jazz Orchestra. 

Jazz musician, band leader and composer Angelika Niescier, who was named by Arte Culture  "one of the most exciting voices in German jazz," was inspired in "Wagner Year" 2013 by one of Wagner’s most fascinating female characters: Kundry, seductress and guardian of the Grail, from the opera Parsifal.

Kundry is illuminated not only as a person, but also in connection with her surroundings and the other protagonists. Angelika Niescier designed the musical commentary of Kundry using the idioms of contemporary jazz. Wagner's original themes are thus conveyed in abstract form.

Wagner's vocals stay nearly the same, but are here accompanied by an entirely new jazz sound, inspired by Wagner's original music and interpreted by mezzo-soprano Magdalena Wór.

Angelika Niescier has initiated many innovative projects and received numerous prizes, such as the prestigious ECHO Jazz Award in 2010 for "Newcomer of the Year, National." Whether it's her solo programs, her ongoing work with her quartet "Angelika Niescier – sublime," duo encounters of various kinds, or commissioned compositions for groups large and small in the areas of film, theater and dance – one of the central themes of her work is mixing complex composition and intense improvisation into an organic whole. Moreover, Niescier considers the word, the image, movement and the visual arts as important sources of inspiration.

Organized by the Embassy of the Federal Republic of Germany in cooperation with Deutsche Welle.

This event is part of the EU-Music-Month Series.

Location: National Museum of Women in the Arts, 1250 New York Avenue NW, Washington, DC

German Women's Jazz Orchestra

Wagner Society of Washington DC

The 200th Anniversary Year of Richard Wagner

"Lohengrin" in the Deutsche Oper Berlin, Premiere on 04/15/2012

The concert in Bayreuth on Wagner’s actual birthday represents the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the Wagner Anniversary Year 2013, which will see a vast array of operatic and other performances, exhibitions, seminars, and more, devoted to the composer throughout Germany.