Performance of Stockhausen Hymnen Reviewed

English: Karlheinz Stockhausen October 1994 in...

Source: The Guardian.

Though it has never received the attention that Gesang der Jünglinge – Stockhausen’s first landmark electronic score – has done over the past 60 years, Hymnen, the vast canvas, part electronic music, part musique concrète, based on a collection of national anthems from around the world, which he assembled in the mid-60s, seems to me an equally extraordinary achievement. The four parts, or regions as Stockhausen calls them, play for over two hours, and perhaps it’s the sheer scale of the work that has discouraged performances of what in its original version existed purely on tape.