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Brahms: Wach Auf, Meins Herzens Schone / Speck, Le Bozec, Vocalensemble Rastatt


Release Date: 01/01/2000 
Label:  Carus   Catalog #: 83448  
Composer:  Johannes Brahms
Performer:  Anne Le Bozec
Conductor:  Holger Speck
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Rastatt Vocal Ensemble
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Length: 1 Hours 4 Mins. 

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Notes and Editorial Reviews

Warm and elegant.

Brahms must have had some kind of Midas touch. Whatever he touched turned to a treasury of … well, Brahms … and in a good sense. And so when he arranged a collection of folk-songs, they all turned into siblings of his Liebeslieder and lullabies. The folk-songs, arranged for mixed chorus, occupy about half of the program on this disc. The rest drawn from his vocal Quartets for mixed choir and piano, and, as a surprise, there are three pieces for solo piano that separate substantial stretches of choral music.

Most of these songs inhabit the lands far distant from the Romantic kingdom of drama and melancholy. The overall impression is of warm and calm. The singing of the
Read more Vocalensemble Rastatt is smooth and stylish. Even in the most difficult passages it sounds feather-light and effortless. The singers are clearly enjoying what they are doing. The faster numbers are cheerful and bouncy, the slower ones atmospheric and soulful. Everywhere subtle nuances are in place. The diction is perfect, and the hissing s-s and z-s, which can be a plague for German choral singing, are compact and accurate. For each song the conductor Holger Speck chooses just the right tempo.

Brahms, as always, is torn between two poles: the old and the new, the “Rome-antique” and the Romantic. But he also had a gift for locating a satisfying equilibrium. The result, as it often came from his hands, looks like a wedding gown sewn out of quilted blankets. On the other hand it is so invitingly comfortable and many of the melodies are instantly memorable.

The idea of inserting three pure instrumental pieces was ingenious. In other circumstances it could look artificial; here it really works. It refreshes the feelings, and allows us to continue and enjoy the singing without getting bored. Anne Le Bozec plays with a delicate and soft touch. She is expressive, yet with perfect Brahmsian restraint. She is also a sensitive accompanist in the Quartets.

The recording is as clear as the morning air, and captures well all levels of the choir. The liner-note is in German, English and French, and contains an essay on the songs, by Jakob Hauschildt. The full texts of the songs are included, along with their English translations. Listening to this disc gave me a lot of pleasure, and I am sure that this warm and elegant performance will delight many lovers of choral singing.

-- Oleg Ledeniov, MusicWeb International

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Works on This Recording

1. Deutsche Volkslieder (12), WoO 35: no 6, Des Abends kann ich by Johannes Brahms
Conductor:  Holger Speck
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Rastatt Vocal Ensemble
Length: 1 Minutes 29 Secs. 
2. Deutsche Volkslieder (14), WoO 34: no 3, Bei nächlicher Weil by Johannes Brahms
Conductor:  Holger Speck
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Rastatt Vocal Ensemble
Length: 2 Minutes 15 Secs. 
3. Deutsche Volkslieder (14), WoO 34: no 11, Die Wollust by Johannes Brahms
Conductor:  Holger Speck
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Rastatt Vocal Ensemble
Length: 1 Minutes 26 Secs. 
4. Deutsche Volkslieder (20), WoO 38: no 4, Erlaube mir, feins Mädchen by Johannes Brahms
Conductor:  Holger Speck
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Rastatt Vocal Ensemble
Period: Romantic 
Length: 1 Minutes 32 Secs. 
5. Deutsche Volkslieder (12), WoO 35: no 5, Da unten im Tale by Johannes Brahms
Conductor:  Holger Speck
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Rastatt Vocal Ensemble
Length: 1 Minutes 40 Secs. 
6. Pieces (6) for Piano, Op. 118: no 1, Intermezzo in A minor by Johannes Brahms
Performer:  Anne Le Bozec (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1892; Austria 
Length: 2 Minutes 13 Secs. 
7. Deutsche Volkslieder (12), WoO 35: no 2, Wach auf! by Johannes Brahms
Conductor:  Holger Speck
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Rastatt Vocal Ensemble
Length: 2 Minutes 24 Secs. 
8. Deutsche Volkslieder (14), WoO 34: no 10, Der tote Knabe by Johannes Brahms
Conductor:  Holger Speck
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Rastatt Vocal Ensemble
Length: 1 Minutes 44 Secs. 
9. Deutsche Volkslieder (12), WoO 35: no 8, Dort in den Weiden by Johannes Brahms
Conductor:  Holger Speck
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Rastatt Vocal Ensemble
Length: 1 Minutes 01 Secs. 
10. Deutsche Volkslieder (14), WoO 34: no 8, In stiller Nacht by Johannes Brahms
Conductor:  Holger Speck
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Rastatt Vocal Ensemble
Length: 2 Minutes 21 Secs. 
11. Vocal Quartets (3), Op. 31: no 1, Wechsellied zum Tanz by Johannes Brahms
Conductor:  Holger Speck
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Rastatt Vocal Ensemble
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1859; Germany 
Length: 6 Minutes 24 Secs. 
12. Vocal Quartets (3), Op. 31: no 2, Neckereien by Johannes Brahms
Conductor:  Holger Speck
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Rastatt Vocal Ensemble
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1863; Austria 
Length: 2 Minutes 24 Secs. 
13. Vocal Quartets (3), Op. 31: no 3, Der Gang zum Liebchen by Johannes Brahms
Conductor:  Holger Speck
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Rastatt Vocal Ensemble
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1863; Austria 
Length: 2 Minutes 47 Secs. 
14. Pieces (6) for Piano, Op. 118: no 6, Intermezzo in E flat minor by Johannes Brahms
Performer:  Anne Le Bozec (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1892; Austria 
Length: 4 Minutes 56 Secs. 
15. Songs and Romances (6), Op. 93a: no 1, Der bucklichte Fiedler by Johannes Brahms
Conductor:  Holger Speck
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Rastatt Vocal Ensemble
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1883-1884; Austria 
Length: 1 Minutes 49 Secs. 
16. Deutsche Volkslieder (14), WoO 34: no 2, Mit Lust tät ich ausreiten by Johannes Brahms
Conductor:  Holger Speck
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Rastatt Vocal Ensemble
Length: 1 Minutes 48 Secs. 
17. Deutsche Volkslieder (14), WoO 34: no 7, St. Raphael by Johannes Brahms
Conductor:  Holger Speck
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Rastatt Vocal Ensemble
Length: 2 Minutes 13 Secs. 
18. Deutsche Volkslieder (14), WoO 34: no 13, Schnitter Tod by Johannes Brahms
Conductor:  Holger Speck
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Rastatt Vocal Ensemble
Length: 2 Minutes 05 Secs. 
19. Deutsche Volkslieder (14), WoO 34: no 9, Abschiedslied by Johannes Brahms
Conductor:  Holger Speck
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Rastatt Vocal Ensemble
Length: 2 Minutes 57 Secs. 
20. Ballades (4) for Piano, Op. 10: no 4 in B major by Johannes Brahms
Performer:  Anne Le Bozec (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1854; Germany 
Length: - Minutes - Secs. 
21. Vocal Quartets (3), Op. 64: no 1, An die Heimat by Johannes Brahms
Conductor:  Holger Speck
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Rastatt Vocal Ensemble
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1862-1863; Austria 
Length: 5 Minutes 21 Secs. 
22. Vocal Quartets (3), Op. 64: no 2, Der Abend by Johannes Brahms
Conductor:  Holger Speck
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Rastatt Vocal Ensemble
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1874; Austria 
Length: 4 Minutes 37 Secs. 

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