The Weimar Republic is the designation for the German Reich (Realm)—in other words, Germany—between November 1918, when Kaiser Wilhelm II abdicated his thrones, and January 1933, when Hitler was named Chancellor. Uncertain, swirling, glittering, chaotic, these 14 years found a hyperkinetic symbol in the cabaret, that “poisoned cookie,” as the German composer Friedrich Hollaender called it. Weimar culture was daring and dark, its lyricism laced with nihilism, its musical outpouring spectacular. Kurt Weill’s Violin Concerto (1924) and Paul Hindemith’s Symphony: Mathis der Maler (1934) share this program with Arnold Schoenberg’s arrangements of Bach. —L.J.
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