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Strauss: Lieder / Daniel Behle, Oliver Schnyder

Strauss / Behle / Schnyder
Release Date: 02/28/2012 
Label:  Capriccio Records   Catalog #: 5110   Spars Code: DDD 
Composer:  Richard Strauss
Performer:  Daniel BehleOliver Schnyder
Number of Discs: 1 
In Stock: Usually ships in 24 hours.  

Notes and Editorial Reviews



R. STRAUSS Ständchen. Herr Lenz. Ich liebe dich. Freundliche Vision. Ruhe, meine Seele. Cäcilie. Heimliche Aufforderung. Morgen. Zueignung. Nichts. Die Nacht. Die Georgine. Geduld. Die Verschweigenen. Die Zeitlose. Allerseelen. Wozu noch, Mädchen, soll es frommen. Breit’ über mein Haupt. Schön sind, doch kalt die Himmelsterne. Wie solten wir geheim sie halten. Hoffen und wieder verzagen. Befreit Daniel Behle (ten); Oliver Schnyder (pn) CAPPRICIO 5110 (57:48 Text and Translation) Read more />

Although Richard Strauss wrote over two hundred songs, our notable singers tend to present the same elite group of thirty or forty, time after time. One finds it refreshing therefore to have the repertoire somewhat expanded by the wonderful Daniel Behle and his equally wonderful pianist Oliver Schnyder. Schnyder displays his technical skill and good taste early on in Herr Lenz, a virtual scherzo for piano with a vocal accompaniment sung with grace and simplicity by his genial colleague. Behle’s voice quality and pronunciation are reminiscent of Josef Schmidt’s, and if Schmidt might have had, by a small margin, the more beautiful voice, Behle’s intelligence and depth are more than compensation. The personality of his singing is quite unique. One senses modesty behind his virtuosity, a self-forgetfulness, and respectful reverence toward the various objects of his passion. His voice rings brilliantly in dramatic passages, but the pianissimos are brilliant as well, produced with the whole voice, rather than in the crooned and honeyed manner of Britain’s unctuous Ian Bostritch. There is a remarkable logic in Behle’s phrases, and a feeling of inevitability in their sequence. This is especially evident and satisfying in Freundliche Vision where he seamlessly outlines an expansive arc from the first word of the text to the last. Jonas Kaufman (Harmonia Mundi) also sings this piece convincingly, but his treatment is more sequential, making one aware of the sum of the parts rather than the whole. His voice, as well, is not quite as fresh or fluid or controlled as Behle’s. When comparing two contemporary artists, one is instinctively drawn to such particulars such as these, but when comparison is made to an artist of another era, the historical also enters into the picture, and looms large. Like most singers of his time, Franz Völker, born in 1899, does not display in his (DG) performance of this song the pristine pitch and rhythm one hears today. His observance of accents and dynamic markings is less scrupulous, rubato is more prominent, and precision less so. The song’s meaning runs deep, however, springing from a spirit of the times that is hard to reach in the 21st century. Völker’s sensibilities were formed before the First World War, and his singing, the best of which took place in its wake, embodies a comforting assurance that wounds heal, the human heart is essentially noble, God is on his throne, and that the pure, the bright, the beautiful are still real and attainable. There could be no such assurance in the era following. The second, even more terrible world war, posed one of the greatest questions of the 20th century: how did the great German culture fall into such unimaginable depravity and savagery? Consequently, how could a young German artist sing of a Freundliche Vision or of Gott im Frühling without an overtone of irony? Emotional aloofness was inevitable, leading to a preoccupation with the academic and analytical in an effort to codify and thus preserve the spirit of the Lied , which was in fact irretrievably lost to their generation. There is, for example, a glacial beauty in Elisabeth Schwarzkopf’s recording of Freundliche Vision, (EMI) but it is far from the folk-like, candid simplicity associated with German song up to this time, and one finds oneself admiring her artistry rather than believing her words. Some exceptions may be cited, such as Fischer-Dieskau’s performance of Lieder eines fahrenden Gesellen, with Furtwängler, (EMI), owing perhaps to the work’s motif of disillusionment, but they are exceptions nonetheless.


Being in the midst of our own time, it is difficult to judge its character or trends, but one might hazard a guess, prompted by the singing of Daniel Behle, and a few other fine artists, including Roman Terkel, Matthias Goerne, and Dietrich Henschel, that we have moved beyond the blight and despair—and arrogance—of those postwar academics, and their students, gifted as they might have been. Daniel Behle, for one, consciously or instinctively, seems to have found a way back to the heart of the German Lied , which is, after all the human heart.


FANFARE: Raymond Beegle
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Works on This Recording

1.
Lieder (8), Op. 10 by Richard Strauss
Performer:  Daniel Behle (Tenor), Oliver Schnyder (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1885; Germany 
2.
Lieder (6), Op. 37: no 5, Herr Lenz by Richard Strauss
Performer:  Daniel Behle (Tenor), Oliver Schnyder (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1896; Germany 
3.
Lieder (6), Op. 37: no 2, Ich liebe dich by Richard Strauss
Performer:  Daniel Behle (Tenor), Oliver Schnyder (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1898; Germany 
4.
Lieder (6), Op. 17: no 2, Ständchen by Richard Strauss
Performer:  Daniel Behle (Tenor), Oliver Schnyder (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1885-1887; Germany 
5.
Lieder (5), Op. 48: no 1, Freundliche Vision by Richard Strauss
Performer:  Daniel Behle (Tenor), Oliver Schnyder (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
6.
Lieder (5), Op. 39: no 4, Befreit by Richard Strauss
Performer:  Daniel Behle (Tenor), Oliver Schnyder (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
7.
Lieder (4), Op. 27 by Richard Strauss
Performer:  Daniel Behle (Tenor), Oliver Schnyder (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1894; Germany 
8.
Lieder aus Lotusblättern (6), Op. 19 by Richard Strauss
Performer:  Daniel Behle (Tenor), Oliver Schnyder (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1885-1888; Germany 

Sound Samples

6 Lieder, Op. 17, TrV 149: No. 2. Standchen
6 Lieder, Op. 37, TrV 187 (text by E. von Bodman): 6 Lieder, Op. 37, TrV 187: No. 5. Herr Lenz
6 Lieder, Op. 37, TrV 187 (text by D. von Liliencron): 6 Lieder, Op. 37, TrV 187: No. 2. Ich liebe dich
5 Lieder, Op. 48, TrV 202 (text by O.J. Bierbaum): 5 Lieder, Op. 48, TrV 202: No. 1. Freundliche Vision
4 Lieder, Op. 27, TrV 170: No. 1. Ruhe, meine Seele
4 Lieder, Op. 27, TrV 170: No. 2. Cacilie
4 Lieder, Op. 27, TrV 170: No. 3. Heimliche Aufforderung
4 Lieder, Op. 27, TrV 170: No. 4. Morgen
8 Gedichte aus Letzte Blatter, Op. 10, TrV 141: No. 1. Zueignung
8 Gedichte aus Letzte Blatter, Op. 10, TrV 141: No. 2. Nichts
8 Gedichte aus Letzte Blatter, Op. 10, TrV 141: No. 3. Die Nacht (The Night)
8 Gedichte aus Letzte Blatter, Op. 10, TrV 141: No. 4. Die Georgine
8 Gedichte aus Letzte Blatter, Op. 10, TrV 141: No. 5. Geduld
8 Gedichte aus Letzte Blatter, Op. 10, TrV 141: No. 6. Die Verschwiegenen
8 Gedichte aus Letzte Blatter, Op. 10, TrV 141: No. 7. Die Zeitlose
8 Gedichte aus Letzte Blatter, Op. 10, TrV 141: No. 8. Allerseelen
6 Lieder aus Lotosblatter, Op. 19, TrV 152: No. 1. Wozu noch, Madchen
6 Lieder aus Lotosblatter, Op. 19, TrV 152: No. 2. Breit uber mein Haupt
6 Lieder aus Lotosblatter, Op. 19, TrV 152: No. 3. Schon sind, doch kalt die Himmelssterne
6 Lieder aus Lotosblatter, Op. 19, TrV 152: No. 4. Wie sollten wir geheim sie halten
6 Lieder aus Lotosblatter, Op. 19, TrV 152: No. 5. Hoffen und wieder verzagen
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

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