Notes and Editorial Reviews
In der Mondnacht.
Preziosas Sprüchlein gegen Kopfweh.
Du kleine Biene, verfolg mich nicht.
Frühling im Sommer.
Mir ist, als zögen Arme.
Hirschlein ging im Wald
Komm herbei, Tod!
Scheiden und Meiden.
Ich und du.
Zu den Bergen hebet sich ein Augenpaar.
Der Tod des Verräters
Christina Landshamer (s);
Markus Schäfer (t);
Hans Christoph Begemann (bar);
Mathias Hausmann (bar); Matthias Veit (pn)
NAXOS 8.572558 (57: 13)
Peter Cornelius (1824–1874) is known to many listeners as the composer of the comic opera
The Barber of Baghdad,
but this disc (numbered Vol. 3 of his
) shows that he could also write utterly charming, light songs as well. Being music that abuts German pop music and operetta, it will certainly not provide you with a musical main course, but it is just chock full of frothy dessert treats. Song after song after song is tuneful, pretty but well written, catching an upbeat mood and sustaining it, and happily we have a quartet of singers and pianist who fully understand the idiom. In fact, I’d have to give particular kudos to pianist Veit for being, I believe, the driving force of this disc. His playing is what continually catches the ear with its verve, humor, and perfect touch. I was somewhat surprised, in reading his bio in the booklet, to discover that this pianist has also studied voice and attended master classes by famous singers as well as by famous pianists, but perhaps I shouldn’t be. He certainly makes the piano lines sing.
As I say, all of the singers on this disc are good, both vocally and in terms of phrasing and interpretation. Perhaps the biggest surprise, to me, was Mathias Hausmann, the alternate baritone; when he first started singing (
In der Mondnacht
), I thought it was a tenor voice, so light, bright, and high was it placed, but as the song progressed I did notice a few “baritonal” notes—but it’s still a very high voice indeed.
Since Naxos, like so many labels, stuck the texts and translations online, and I refuse to watch a computer screen while I listen, I had to assume the lyric content of these songs from their titles, but fortunately most of them are fairly descriptive of what one would expect from the music. Nevertheless, this is well worth your hearing. I’m certainly looking forward to reviewing Vol. 4 when it arrives.
FANFARE: Lynn René Bayley
Works on This Recording
Zweistimmige Lieder (3), Op. 6 by Peter Cornelius
Markus Schäfer (Tenor),
Christina Landshamer (Soprano),
Hans Christoph Begemann (Bass),
Matthias Veit (Piano)
Written: 1861-1862; Vienna, Austria
Verratene Liebe by Peter Cornelius
Written: 1847-1848; Germany
In der Mondnacht by Peter Cornelius
Mathias Hausmann (Bass-baritone),
Matthias Veit (Piano)
Ich und du by Peter Cornelius
Written: 1861; Vienna, Austria
Am Meer by Peter Cornelius
Written: 1866; Vienna, Austria
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