Violin concerto in D minor Lausanne Chamber orchestra. Click on a button at the right side.
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Though easier to play than, say, Kreisleriana, these scenes of childhood are by no means pieces to be played by children. They have, of course, survived effortlessly in the concert hall. The years between and were, to say the least, full of remarkable musical activity with Schumann concentrating on lieder, symphonic music and chamber music in turn.
The work is hardly, if ever, heard complete on the concert platform.
- February Catalogue - Records International.
- Niños que muerden a perros (Spanish Edition).
- Growing Up Spiritually.
The pieces are shorter and less complex, but there are forty-three of them as opposed to the thirteen in Op It is this sense of warmth and reality that differentiates his music from the infinitely more didactic collections of vocal collections for children by such eighteenth-century German composers as Hiller, Burmann and Reichardt. There are many parallels between the two works, and a number of shared themes which obviously attracted the composer. For example, there are orphan girls in both sets in the same tonality ; there are pieces entitled Mignon in Op 68 and Op 79; there are May songs in each of the works, as well as pieces on Christmas themes.
In these collections the accompaniments are kept extremely simple. There is no evidence that Schumann ever intended this vocal anthology to be heard as a whole, any more than he expected the Op 68 piano pieces all to be performed at one sitting; instead these were anthologies from which a young pianist or singer might select something suitable of an evening for a domestic performance in front of their parents. The parents too were likely to have performed the music for their children. But one cannot pretend that this is as straightforward a proposition as presenting a Dichterliebe, Frauenliebe und -leben or Liederkreis, all cycles which were designed to be performed, in their entirety, by grown-ups on the concert platform.
The music inhabits a world of its own to such an extent that it is all but impossible to tack on a further twenty minutes of unrelated songs on disc, or in the concert hall. Therefore I have planned a performing version of the Op 79 cycle for this disc which retains the order of the songs as Schumann published them but interpolates, here and there, solo piano pieces from Op The inclusion of some of this closely related piano music not only unites some of the themes shared by both opus numbers allowing us to hear these songs and piano pieces side by side , but it also provides a variety of speed and mood missing from parts of Op The aggregate impression made by this collection can be samey, notwithstanding its inarguable delicacy and charm: no sooner has one song ended on a vocal cadence than the next strikes up with scarcely a moment of intervening pianistic preparation.
I have chosen fifteen short piano pieces from Op 68 and threaded them between the songs in a sequence carefully planned in terms of theme, mood and tonality, avoiding placing piano music between those songs in Op 79 where the composer seems to have envisaged a segue.
In this case, however, the musical child is more likely to have been a pianist rather than a singer. The set seems divided thus between songs for an adult to sing, and songs for children to sing.
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But even this, given the nature of vocal training, and the time it takes a singer to mature, is unrealistic. Vocal development is slower than for all other musical disciplines; simplicity on the printed page may be a guarantee of easy pianism, but it is equally a guarantee of challenging vocalism. Schumann seems not quite to have appreciated that for an inexperienced singer a quick and voluble song is much easier to perform than a slow and sustained one; he erroneously equates pianistic accessibility with vocal ease.
They had a better chance of success in performance; after all, concert halls are full of teenage pianists while there is a complete lack of professional solo singers who are under twenty. Schumann himself realized that if he was to continue writing music for young people it should be in the form of piano music, not songs.
In a volume of songs was published by a musician named Johann Hermann, a pseudonym for Johann Hermann Budy. Completely new titles are furnished for these pieces the public was deliberately led to think that these were genuine Schumann lieder, newly discovered in his Nachlass. At this time the composer was already half-way though the composition of the Liederalbum.
Terrified of conscription, or worse, he fled the city by rail with his family on 5 May and looked for refuge in various suburbs before he and Clara settled on Kreischa, a peaceful and beautiful little town south-east of Dresden. Like so many civilized men, and so many creative artists, he declined to join the fight; but he was glad it was being fought by others.
Unlike Wagner, who raged at the barricades and who had to flee Dresden for Switzerland on a false passport when the Prussians gained control , Schumann side-stepped any direct involvement with the revolution when it came to his own doorstep. But support for the ideals of the republicans remained theoretical rather than practical. Perhaps his choice of Hoffmann von Fallersleben renowned for his outspoken liberal ideals for so many of the texts in his Op 79 was something of a covert act of sympathy.
The rather bellicose Uhland poem might well have been chosen for political reasons, and Wilhelm Tell, from which the two Schiller settings were chosen, is the story of a famous revolutionary. The thawing of the ice-age of oppression is symbolized by the arrival of a new season and new hope.
It is certainly true that the idea of spring plays a surprisingly large part in the set in thematic terms. In selecting the watchman Lynceus Schumann chooses to side with someone who looks at the world and finds it beautiful, no matter what. The only help he can give lies in the use of his powerful eyes. The words in Faust directly following this lyric, the description of the destruction of the home of Philemon and Baucis, seem to condemn the same kind of revolutionary upheaval which Schumann had seen in Dresden.
As discussed above, Dresden was in the middle of a revolutionary upheaval. This unjustly neglected little song, which belongs to no set or opus number, closes this disc. There are four editions of Gedichte, each different from the other. The Gedichte of and are sources of Brahms songs.