Work: Songs My Mother Taught Me (Als die alte Mutter)
About This Work
Dvorák's Gypsy Melodies is a cycle of 10 songs composed for the tenor Gustav Walter, who sang with the Vienna Court Opera and was a great admirer of Dvorák. The composer used Walter's own German translations of the original Czech texts
as the basis of his settings. While exact dates for these songs are unknown, it is thought that they were written in just a few day at the end of February 1880. The songs display Dvorák's ever-increasing skill at vocal composition; their vocal melodies are supple and natural, and the piano accompaniment is often interesting -- vivacious and dance-like. Despite the cycle's title, the songs are not written in an authentic gypsy idiom, but they do reflect in general the character of gypsy music, filtered through Dvorák's own compositional style.
-- Alexander Carpenter, All Music Guide
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