The onset of the First World War and the Russian Revolution of 1917 had drastic consequences for Stravinsky in his Swiss exile: his property was confiscated, and he thereby lost the rights to his works and the associated income, leaving him in a situation which isolated him as an artist. His librettist for L'Histoire du soldat, Charles Ferdinand Ramuz, also found himself in this terrible position. In 1917 Ramuz and Stravinsky hatched the idea of "founding a travelling theatre which, with as little funding as possible, could be moved easily from place to place and perform in small meeting places." Towards the end of the First World War, a chamber theater was thus formed which had a timeless image and could be established anywhere. It involved a street ballad-like series of scenes about a pact between a soldier and the devil which was "to be read, played and danced". The associated new work, with its diversity, its structure, the switching between narration, action, mime and dance, and its elements from tango, English Waltz and Ragtime, could not have been categorized under any genre which existed at the time. It was premiered on 28 September 1918 and in this version is brilliantly reinterpreted by the Nederlands Dans Theater.
|Official Release Date||Sep 30, 2014|
|Starring||Fiona Lummis, Karin Heyninck, Gerald Tibbs, Teresina Mosco, Lionel Hoche|
|Running Time||51 Minutes|