Carmina Burana (Orff)
From The Art and Popular Culture Encyclopedia
- Carl Orff developed a dramatic concept he called "Theatrum mundi" in which music, movement, and speech were inseparable. Babcock writes that "Orff's artistic formula limited the music in that every musical moment was to be connected with an action on stage. It is here that modern performances of Carmina Burana fall short of Orff's intentions." Although Carmina Burana was intended as a staged work involving dance, choreography, visual design and other stage action, the piece is now usually performed in concert halls as a cantata.
Carmina Burana is a scenic cantata composed by Carl Orff in 1935-1936, first staged in 1937. The work was initially described as degenerate music by local music critics, but later enthusiastically adopted by the Nazi regime. Orff first encountered the text in John Addington Symonds's 1884 publication, Wine, Women, and Song. Carmina Burana was first staged in Frankfurt on June 8 1937.