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Eisler: Roundheads and Peakheads Op. 45
Stage music to the play by B. Brecht

In February 1934 Eisler arrived in Brecht’s exile in Skovbostrand to spend two months “under the Danish thatched roof”. In a joint effort – which also involved Brecht’s assistant Margarete Steffin – the two men created large parts of the new play “Die Rundköpfe und die Spitzköpfe”. Eisler composed eleven numbers in 1934 and,  in 1936, two more which, along with the overture and several instrumental sections, “surpass by far the framework of incidental music”. In this respect, the designation “play with music” seems more apposite.

The world premiere on 4 November 1936 at the little Copenhagen experimental theatre “Riddersaalen” was not a success. Several songs from the incidental music have, however, long since taken on a life of their own. Today, these songs can be found in the repertoire of all leading Brecht singers throughout the world.

(Jürgen Schebera)