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CHAN 10093
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CHAN 10093
Goethe Lieder

Medtner: Goethe Lieder

The Classical Shop
release date: March 2004

Originally recorded in 2003

Artists:

Geoffrey Tozer


Susan Gritton

soprano

Venue:

Potton Hall Studio, Westleton, Suffolk



Producer:

Rachel Smith



Engineer:

Jonathan Cooper


Matthew Walker

(Assistant)

Record Label
Chandos

Genre:

Vocal & Song


Russian

Total Time - 78:14
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Goethe Lieder

 

NIKOLAI MEDTNER

(1880-1951)
Select Complete Single Disc for
   
  Goethe Lieder  
   
 

From '12 Lieder von Goethe', Op. 15

21:09  
1 2 An die Türen will ich schleichen . . . (from 'Wilhelm Meister'). Andantino con moto 2:09
2 3 Selbstbetrug. Allegretto con moto 1:19
3 4 Sie liebt mich! . . . (from 'Erwin und Elmire'). Con moto appassionato (Leidenschaftlich bewegt) 1:15
4 5 So tanzet und springet . . . (from 'Lila'). Allegretto giocoso 1:03
5 6 Vor Gericht (Ballade). Moderato. Severo 4:08
6 7 Meeresstille. Andante lugubre - 3:44
7 8 Glükliche Fahrt. Andante, stentato - 1:15
8 9 Nähe des Geliebten. Largamente, con passione - 2:22
9 10 Der untreue Knabe (Ballade). Allegro - 3:50
   
 

9 Lieder von Goethe, Op. 6

20:26  
  [To] E.K. & A.M. Medtner  
10 1 Wandrers Nachtlied II. Lento - Maestoso 2:05
11 2 Mailied. Allegretto frescamento - 1:50
12 3 Elfenliedchen. Allegretto 1:29
13 4 Im Vorübergehn. Tempo di passo leggiero 1:59
14 5 Liebliches Kind! . . . (from 'Claudine von Villa-Bella'). Andantino 2:19
15 6 Inneres Wühlen . . . (from 'Erwin und Elmire'). Andantino con moto interioro 1:43
16 7 Sieh mich, Heil'ger, wie ich bin . . . (from 'Erwin und Elmire'). Andantino con pianto - 3:12
17 8 Erster Verlust. Allegretto sognando 2:45
18 9 Gefunden (Epithalamion). Tempo di passo tranquillo 3:00
   
 

From '6 Gedichte von Goethe', Op. 18

3:33  
19 5 Das Veilchen (Ballade). Andante - Più mosso - 3:33
   
 

Suite-Vocalise, Op. 41 No. 2

18:58  
  in F minor - in f-Moll - en fa mineur  
  À Madame Leopold Fortier  
20 Introduzione. Allegretto espressivo - 0:53
21 I Gesang der Nymphen. Andante con moto - 4:06
22 II Geheimnisse. Molto sostenuto e misterioso 4:25
23 III Zug der Grazien. Allegretto sempro al rigore di tempo - 3:26
24 IV Was der Dichter sprichtl. Tranquillo - 6:06
   
 

Sonaate-Vocalise, Op. 41 No. 1

14:19  
  mit einem Motto 'Geweihter Platz von Goethe  
  in C major - in C-Dur - en ut majeur  
25 Motto: 'Geweihter Platz'. Allegretto tranquillo e sereno 3:06
26 Sonate-Vocalise. Allegretto cantabile e con moto - 11:12
Geoffrey Tozer’s traversal of Medtner’s music for piano offers outstanding interpretations of the work of an important Russian composer who was the link between the romanticism of the ‘Mighty Handful’ and the music of Prokofiev and Shostakovich.

This disc features Medtner’s Suite-Vocalise and Sonate-Vocalise, works which Tozer ranks among the composer’s finest. Winner of the 1994 Kathleen Ferrier Memorial Prize, Susan Gritton appears regularly in recital throughout Britain and worldwide. Her recordings for Chandos include Haydn’s Missa Cellensis and most recently the Gramophone award-winning disc of Masses by Hummel.

Medtner’s music is highly melodic, emotional and appealing, and this disc makes a refreshing addition to the art/song discography.

This repertoire is rare, and most of it is not available on CD.


Medtner’s first group of Goethe settings, 9 Lieder von Goethe, Op. 6 (1904) was composed as a wedding present to his brother Emil and the latter’s wife-to-be, Anna. The agony and intensity of the music seems highly inappropriate until one realises that Medtner was, himself, in love with Anna, but forbidden to marry her. The intensity of the music is an obvious reflection of Medtner’s emotional state. After a period the marriage was dissolved, and in due course the real lovers married.

Four years later, more ambitious Goethe settings were published as 12 Lieder von Goethe, Op. 15. These are perhaps more of a garland of songs on Goethe poems than a set with a common theme like Op. 6. This recording offers Nos 2 to 10. Elisabeth Schwarzkopf once observed that Medtner’s songs were among the hardest things she ever had to sing, a statement which doubtless accounts for the songs’ neglect.

The 6 Gedichte von Goethe, Op. 18 (1908) contains the most elaborate of Medtner’s Goethe settings, including ‘Das Veilchen’ which, in its extravagance, could not be more different from Mozart’s setting of the same poem. There is a tradition of vocalises in Russian music, with well known examples by Rachmaninov, Glière and Stravinsky, but Medtner entered it perhaps more thoroughly than any, inviting the singer to invent new vowels in order to aid sense and articulation. The Suite-Vocalise, Op. 41 No. 2 (1926) bears the marks of sorrow and bitterness, recollected in tranquility. Sonate-Vocalise, Op. 41 No. 1 is music of purity and simplicity. The work, in the key of C major, a key Medtner always chose for music of radiance and beauty, is dedicated to Anna Medtner.


'Tozer has already recorded Medtner's complete piano Concerts for Chandos and now. Aided and abetted by the admirable soprano Susan Gritton, he intends to retrieve Medtner's reputation as songwriter, in particular with his settings of Goethe.'
International Record Review

'Tozer is, as ever, a dependable pair of hands in Medtner's testing yet idiomatic piano writing. But this is Susan Gritton's disc: both in the texted lieder and the quasi-instrumental vocalises she produces a range of tone, an accuracy of intonation, a fluidity and sometimes grandeur of phrasing, that presents this eloquent and little-known music in a consistenly beneficent light. All in all, an entrancing disc.'
BBC Music Magazine




*****
A Charlton

*****
C Guerreiro