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Archive: Dream of Gerontius

Wien Musikverein | Großer Saal


  • Matthew Rose, bass
  • Wiener Singverein, choir
  • Johannes Prinz, choir master
  • Sara Fulgoni, mezzosoprano
  • David Butt Philip, tenor
  • Michael Schonwandt, conductor


An old man has died. His prayers, the intercessions of his friends and the blessings of the priest have trailed off. A guardian angel guides his soul past ravenous demons and, after pleading and purgation, leads it to salvation: strong stuff for a compelling piece of music! Edward Elgar’s «The Dream of Gerontius» ranks among the most-performed oratorios in the United Kingdom after Handel’s «Messiah» and Mendelssohn’s «Elias». Based on a poem of nearly 900 lines by the Blessed Cardinal John Henry Newman, the work lasting a little over 90 minutes was first performed in 1900 in Birmingham under the direction of Hans Richter. Elgar, the English national composer, considered the oratorio boasting an extensive orchestration his magnum opus. Renowned vocal soloists will perform the piece together with the Tonkunstler and the Wiener Singverein. Michael Schönwandt, a much-liked Guest Conductor of the orchestra for many years, will take the stand.

Johannes Prinz

Johannes Prinz


Johannes Prinz, Artistic Director of the Vienna Singverein and the Vienna Chamber Choir, and Professor for Choral Conducting at the University for Music in Graz, was born into a family of teachers in Graz and grew up in a musical environment. Prinz moved to Vienna in order to pursue his musical education, and counted among his teachers Ferdinand Grossmann – the legendary director of the Vienna Boys Choir – and Erwin Ortner. Prinz completed his studies in Music Education and his training as a teacher of singing with distinction. Alongside this, he studied Conducting and sang in the ORF (Austrian Television and Radio) Choir and the Arnold Schoenberg Choir, in which latter he was soon gaining valuable experience as assistant conductor.

From 1982 onwards, Johannes Prinz conducted the choir of the Vienna University of Economics, which, under its abbreviated name, the W.U. Choir, advanced under Prinz’s direction to become one of the leading vocal ensembles in Austria. Up until 1998, Prinz also directed the Chamber Choir of the Vienna Music College. In 1991, he took up the baton as conductor of the Vienna Singverein, joining at a moment when the choir’s reputation for excellence was at a peak. Prinz has additional been conductor of the Vienna Chamber Choir since 1995.

Johannes Prinz has been able to pass on his pedagogic skills and his experience of directing choirs at the Vocal Week in Wolfsberg – which he founded himself – and, since 1985, at the University for Music and Arts in Vienna. Today, Johannes Prinz is University Professor for choral conducting at the University for Music in Graz.

Correct as of


Edward Elgar

«The Dream of Gerontius» for Soli, Choir and Orchestra op. 38


  • Prelude

  • Praise to the holiest

  • My work is done

  • Be merciful

  • Holy Mary, pray for Him

  • Litany - Holy Mary

  • Sanctus fortis

  • Softly and gently


100 Min.