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Strauss: Lieder / Soile Isokoski, Marita Viitasalo

Strauss / Isokoski / Viitasalo
Release Date: 01/31/2012 
Label:  Ondine   Catalog #: 1187  
Composer:  Richard Strauss
Performer:  Soile IsokoskiMarita Viitasalo
Number of Discs: 1 
Length: 1 Hours 4 Mins. 

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Notes and Editorial Reviews



R. STRAUSS Allerseelen. Schön sind, doch kalt. Die Nacht. Ich trage meine Minne. Die Georgine. Ach Lieb, ich muss nun scheiden. Mein Auge. Meinem Kinde. Mutterändelei. All mein’ Gedanken. Ständchen. Zueignung. Das Rosenband. Wie solten wir geheim sie hatten. Du meines Herzens Krönerlein. Mein Herz ist stumm. Befreit. Morgen! Cäcilie. 3 Lieder der Ophelia. Malven Soile Isokoski (sop); Marita Viitasalo (pn) ONDINE ODE 1187-2 (64:05 Text and Translation)

Read more /> A German poet’s true love, if she lived in the 19th century, was decidedly angelic in nature. She was, of course beautiful, but virtuous and pure as well, as evidenced by the lyrics we hear on this disc: “your snowy innocence,” “your sweet glances,” “you are so gentle and quiet,” “you are like a rose in the forest that knows nothing of its blossom.” Richard Strauss presumably saw such qualities in his wife, Pauline, the inspiration for many of these song settings, conceived with her voice in mind, dedicated to her, and sung by her. Although these attributes have little to do with the ideal female of the 21st century, they seem to perfectly match the voice and temperament of Soile Isokoski, whose chaste, ingenuous, and beautiful singing gives a sense of authenticity to such works as Ich trage meine Minne, Mein Auge, and Du meines Herzens Krönerlein . As well, Isakoski’s superb musicianship seems to be entirely in the service of the music, easily convincing the listener of her deep emotional commitment to each song. Pianist Marita Viitasalo is an excellent foil for this artist, although her sweet and discreet playing is more effective in ensemble rather than solo passages. When, for example, the opening solo phrase of Allerseelen is later repeated as an accompaniment within the body of the song, it is more evocative and graceful, perhaps a little less self-conscious. As for the singing in this particular case, one is not absolutely certain whether Isokoski is reliving or simply imagining the rich past and the early days of love. The tone is limpid, the phrasing supple but one has the feeling that she does not totally own the song. This listener prefers a live recording by Zinka Milanov (Legato Classics), although the sound technology is quite poor. Milanov seems to invest everything she has in the piece, sung just before her retirement in 1966.


When it comes to worldly subjects and passionate declarations, Isokoski appears to be in rather unchartered waters, so that her still-beautiful singing in Cäcilie or Das Rosenband or Zueignung is less arresting. When one hears Zueignung, one prefers the dynamic sweep of Birgit Nilsson (Bluebell), or the more earthy temperament of Marie McLaughlin (Hyperion).


Most of the performances on this disc are deeply moving. A few do not reach the end of dramatic possibility, but one learns over many years of listening to judge artists by their best. When the truth is sung so well, incidental shortcomings are of little account and one admires an artist like Soile Isokoski for her best, which turns out to be some of the best I know.


FANFARE: Raymond Beegle
Read less

Works on This Recording

1.
Malven, AV 304 by Richard Strauss
Performer:  Soile Isokoski (Soprano), Marita Viitasalo (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1948; Germany 
2.
Lieder aus Lotusblättern (6), Op. 19: no 6, Mein Herz ist stumm by Richard Strauss
Performer:  Soile Isokoski (Soprano), Marita Viitasalo (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1885-1888; Germany 
3.
Lieder aus Lotusblättern (6), Op. 19: no 4, Wie sollten wir geheim sie halten by Richard Strauss
Performer:  Soile Isokoski (Soprano), Marita Viitasalo (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1885-1888; Germany 
4.
Lieder aus Lotusblättern (6), Op. 19: no 3, Schön sind, doch kalt by Richard Strauss
Performer:  Soile Isokoski (Soprano), Marita Viitasalo (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
5.
Lieder (8), Op. 10: no 8, Allerseelen by Richard Strauss
Performer:  Soile Isokoski (Soprano), Marita Viitasalo (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1885; Germany 
6.
Lieder (8), Op. 10: no 3, Die Nacht by Richard Strauss
Performer:  Soile Isokoski (Soprano), Marita Viitasalo (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1885; Germany 
7.
Lieder (8), Op. 10: no 1, Zueignung by Richard Strauss
Performer:  Soile Isokoski (Soprano), Marita Viitasalo (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1885; Germany 
8.
Lieder (6), Op. 67: no 3, Sie trugen ihn auf der Bahre bloss by Richard Strauss
Performer:  Soile Isokoski (Soprano), Marita Viitasalo (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1918; Germany 
9.
Lieder (6), Op. 67: no 2, Guten Morgen, 's Sankt Valentinstag by Richard Strauss
Performer:  Soile Isokoski (Soprano), Marita Viitasalo (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1918; Germany 
10.
Lieder (6), Op. 67: no 1, Wie erkenn ich mein Treulieb vor andern nun? by Richard Strauss
Performer:  Soile Isokoski (Soprano), Marita Viitasalo (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1918; Germany 
11.
Lieder (6), Op. 37: no 4, Mein Auge by Richard Strauss
Performer:  Soile Isokoski (Soprano), Marita Viitasalo (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1898; Germany 
12.
Lieder (6), Op. 37: no 3, Meinem Kinde by Richard Strauss
Performer:  Soile Isokoski (Soprano), Marita Viitasalo (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1897; Germany 
13.
Lieder (5), Op. 39: no 4, Befreit by Richard Strauss
Performer:  Soile Isokoski (Soprano), Marita Viitasalo (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
14.
Lieder (4), Op. 36: no 1, Das Rosenband by Richard Strauss
Performer:  Soile Isokoski (Soprano), Marita Viitasalo (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1897; Germany 
15.
Lieder (4), Op. 27: no 2, Cäcilie by Richard Strauss
Performer:  Soile Isokoski (Soprano), Marita Viitasalo (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1894; Germany 
16.
Lieder (3), Op. 43: no 2, Muttertändelei by Richard Strauss
Performer:  Soile Isokoski (Soprano), Marita Viitasalo (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
17.
Schlichte Weisen (5), Op. 21: no 3, Ach Lieb, ich muss nun scheiden by Richard Strauss
Performer:  Soile Isokoski (Soprano), Marita Viitasalo (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1887-1888; Germany 
18.
Lieder (5), Op. 32: no 1, Ich trage meine Minne by Richard Strauss
Performer:  Soile Isokoski (Soprano), Marita Viitasalo (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1896; Germany 
19.
Lieder (4), Op. 27: no 4, Morgen by Richard Strauss
Performer:  Soile Isokoski (Soprano), Marita Viitasalo (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1894; Germany 

Sound Samples

8 Gedichte aus Letzte Blatter, Op. 10, TrV 141: No. 8. Allerseelen
6 Lieder aus Lotosblatter, Op. 19, TrV 152: No. 3. Schon sind, doch kalt die Himmelssterne
8 Gedichte aus Letzte Blatter, Op. 10, TrV 141: No. 3. Die Nacht (The Night)
5 Lieder, Op. 32, TrV 174 (text by K.F. Henckell): 5 Lieder, Op. 32, TrV 174: No. 1. Ich trage meine Minne
8 Gedichte aus Letzte Blatter, Op. 10, TrV 141: No. 4. Die Georgine
Schlichte Weisen, Op. 21, TrV 160: No. 3. Ach Lieb, ich muss nun scheiden
6 Lieder, Op. 37, TrV 187 (text by G. Falke and R. Dehmel): No. 4. Mein Auge
6 Lieder, Op. 37, TrV 187 (text by G. Falke and R. Dehmel): No. 3. Meinem Kinde
3 Gesange alterer deutscher Dichter, Op. 43, TrV 196 (text by G.A. Burger): 3 Gesange alterer deutscher Dichter, Op. 43, TrV 196: No. 2. Muttertandelei
Schlichte Weisen, Op. 21, TrV 160: No. 1. All' mein Gedanken, mein Herz und mein Sinn
6 Lieder, Op. 17, TrV 149: No. 2. Standchen
8 Gedichte aus Letzte Blatter, Op. 10, TrV 141: No. 1. Zueignung
4 Lieder, Op. 36, TrV 186 (text by F.G. Klopstock): 4 Lieder, Op. 36, TrV 186: No. 1. Das Rosenband
6 Lieder aus Lotosblatter, Op. 19, TrV 152: No. 4. Wie sollten wir geheim sie halten
Schlichte Weisen, Op. 21, TrV 160: No. 2. Du meines Herzens Kronelein
6 Lieder aus Lotosblatter, Op. 19, TrV 152: No. 6. Mein Herz ist stumm, mein Herz ist kalt
5 Lieder, Op. 39, TrV 189 (text by R. Dehmel): 5 Lieder, Op. 39, TrV 189: No. 4. Befreit
4 Lieder, Op. 27, TrV 170 (text by J.H. Mackay and H. Hart): No. 4. Morgen
4 Lieder, Op. 27, TrV 170 (text by J.H. Mackay and H. Hart): No. 2. Cacilie
6 Lieder, Op. 67, TrV 238 (text by W. Shakespeare): No. 1. Wie erkenn' ich mein Treulieb vor andern nun?
6 Lieder, Op. 67, TrV 238 (text by W. Shakespeare): No. 2. Guten Morgen, 's ist Sankt Valentinstag
6 Lieder, Op. 67, TrV 238 (text by W. Shakespeare): No. 3. Sie trugen ihn auf der Bahre bloss
Malven (Mallows), TrV 297

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