Anonyma - Eine Frau In Berlin

Zbigniew Preisner

" The slow high-pitched violins, silences and resonance create a desolated and sober atmosphere "

Written by Joep de Bruijn - Review of the regular release

Zbigniew Preisner is of a rare breed of renowned Polish composers who has always written personal scores. Therefore, he was a perfect choice for the German film Anonyma – Ein Frau In Berlin. The film is a tragic story of a German woman trying to survive after the Soviet troops have invaded Berlin in the last days of the Second World War.

Preisner's score opens with the Prelude performed by piano. Leszek Możdżer, pianist and regular collaborator, didn't play the piano on this score; Marcin Wasilewski and Konrad Mastyło did. While I strongly prefer Możdżer, the other pianists have contributed much of great value to numerous of Preisner scores as well. Preisner wrote several variations on the piano theme and several new ones. Most of the music consists of the composer's typical compositions for a small-scale ensemble and piano, while also using some harp and Hammond organ. The slow high-pitched violins, silences and resonances create a desolated and sober atmosphere, fitting the things happening to the main character in the film. Preisner has real gift for composing distinctive and sincere film music like Anonyma. Yet the score also contains a more melodramatic, rhythmic theme with a fuller orchestral sound, which is reprised a bit too often. I would argue that the removal of a few reprises might have helped to nicely counterbalance the subtleties. This results in a score that has an undeniable flaw, but still manages to be an inspiring work.

Anonyma – Ein Frau In Berlin is the first release of a Preisner score since The Beautiful Country in 2005. It became about time for someone to present us with a new Preisner on cd and for that I deeply thank Königskinder. There is more excellent unreleased material (Un Secret, Sportman van de Eeuw, SuperTex…), but this is a good step into the right direction again. Anonyma is a score that should not be neglected by Preisner admirers, nor by anyone who even remotely likes his music.

1. Anonyma / Prelude (2.42)
2. Goodbye, my Friend (2.42)
3. Berlin 1945 (2.08)
4. Fear (4.12)
5. In the Gates of Hell (4.11)
6. Anonyma / Faith (1.03)
7. Between Life and Death (3.56)
8. The Triumphant Hordes (3.03)
9. Reaching Tomorrow (2.37)
10. Anonyma / Hope (1.42)
11. I Need to Survive (4.11)
12. Prayer (2.15)
13. The Next Day (2.29)
14. Anonyma / Love (2.12)
15. The Victors Ball (1.21)
16. Catharsis (2.15)
17. Goodbye, my Friend (End Titles) (0.40)
18. Berlin 1945 / Reminiscene (1.25)
19. We Will Never Forget (2.31)
20. To Anonyma (2.40)

Total Length: 50.15
(click to rate this score)  
(total of 15 votes - average 4.57/5)

Released by

Königskinder KK 003 (regular release 2008)

Conducted by

Adam Klocek

Performed by

The Cracow Philharmonic Musicians


Marcin Wasilewski and Konrad Mastyo

hammond organ

Jozef Skrzek


Anna Sikorzak-Olek