Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Listen to a 17th century German satire

This is a Radio Danielle (Italy) adaptation. Translated from the original German, of course. Bear with the industrial-punk music, Italian chit-chat, and long musical prologue at the beginning. It's worth the wait.

Attributed to: Johann Kuhnau
Date: 1691
Original titles: Musicus Curiosus, or Battalus, the Inquisitive Musician
Subject: Struggle between "beer fiddlers" against the state musicians "in an argument over who is the better musician - those who play tunes by ear and memory or the "Stadtpfeifer" who relies on printed music in order to perform."
Performed: November 8, 2005 at Tonic (experimental music club) in New York
Radio broadcast: February 6, 2007

Listen to the entire play here...
*I am technically incompetant, but if I navigate away from the mp3 player and come back I have to start all over again,

What I liked about it: The wierd disharmonious silly fartamonious burpacious music, the seemingly amateur acting, reading aloud by the prologuist, not pretending that it isn't something written, the fact that they are not trying to be authentically historic. It's like if jazz musicians were wearing Elizabethan & Jacobean costume and T-shirts, which come to think of it, might go over well. This is the kind of thing best enjoyed with friends drinking or toking a lot. The German accent of David Patton who plays Paulus Harmonicus, one of the state musician. The hysterical voice of Kata.

Quotes: I find the lines both stilted and hilarious

1) 'He has to be treated like anyone of the vegetables.'
2) 'This is one stuborn venal dog'
3) 'Well, some lark has made my hat so black, now I will have to wash'
4) 'The Kunstpfeifers are a bunch of tight-asses'
5) 'If you cannot have a virgin you have to dance with the whores'
6) 'When we are alone you have a very busy mouth. But when you are supposed to speak in front of noble people, you stand around as if your mouth were full of butter cookies.'
7) 'Are you that afraid of comedy?' "How could we not be scared?"
8) 'You are some timid hares!'
9) 'When Vashbol travels back home he sees a white horse that is tied up, to which he says, 'White horse, do you want to come with me?' The white horse nods his head and Vashebol thinks 'the horse says yes' [the baliff then arrests Vashebo for horse theft]
10) 'No comedy is funny unless pickled herring is involved.'
11) 'All my dresses have become too tight for I am in the grip of love.'
12) 'How happy my mother would be if I could deliver such news to her'.
13) 'And I shall announce to you merrily that you are about to see a funny comedy'

Favorite line: 'When she opens her mouth it looks like the prison cell of a thief...Her chin is as as cute as a peeled white turnip with its ends snipped off. Her bosum is as heavenly as if a couple of young piglets were inside it... She does not shy away from any work, but she often walks in dirt up to her knees. When I see her I am as delighted as an old sow pissing in the straw.'

'Who needs a master of ceremonies, can't you see how well I can dance? If you want to have me, just you tell me soon, and do you hear it you maidens, who of you want to have me, just look at what a catch I am? Am I not shining under my face like snow?... My title is the Excellent, Kind, Beautiful Iron-strong and big-eared renowned Dominus Senior Herr Don Monsier Jean-Potage Von Pickle Herring.'

Favorite scenes: Scene one - musicians insisting on a new companion buying everyone beer

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