Der Gesang der Nachtigall / Stars

A couple who hosted a garden-concert of ours in 2019 reached out to us and requested one of our “Personalized Birthday Videos” for their friend. They asked us to incorporate the classical piece “Der Gesang der Nachtigall” by Beethoven and “Stars” by Simply Red (in a Latin style). In addition, they wanted to include a segment where they, and some friends, each sing “Happy Birthday” and have us put them all together in a split-screen. So, we rolled up our sleeves and came up with this…

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Die Legende vom toten Soldaten (Kurt Weill)

A live performance during a recital of the Robert Schumann Conservatory in Düsseldorf.

“Die Legende vom toten Soldaten” (1929)
Music: Kurt Weill (originally for A-cappella choir)
Lyrics: Bertolt Brecht
Piano: Jori Schulze-Reimpell
Arrangement: Jori Schulze-Reimpell and Linda Babiak

The text of the “Legend of the Dead Soldier” was written by Bertolt Brecht in 1917 or 1918 (Brecht gave different information on this) and was first published under the title “The Ballad of the Dead Soldier” in the appendix of the drama “Drums in the Night” in 1922. In 1927, Brecht then included the legend in his “Hauspostille.” In addition to the scoring by Weill (originally for an a cappella workers’ choir), there are also scorings by Hanns Eisler and Ernst Busch. The text was intended from the get-go as a vocal performance, since Brecht himself performed it in the manner of a Moritat singer. Allegedly, after the Hitler putsch in November 1923, the piece was number 5 on the putschists’ blacklist and was cited as one of the reasons for Brecht’s expatriation on June 8, 1935.