Classical Editor: Rob Barnett

Music Webmaster
Len Mullenger:

Save around 22%
with these retailers

When the heart is young - a recital of 19 songs
Der Thräne Silberthau!
Aus Längst Vergang'ner Zeit
Die du mein alles bist
Die Näherin
When the Heart is Young
Ich war sein mädel
Das erste Mal
Mondd Mamácskám
Nur einer …
Ich hab' ein Hüglein im Polenland
Nimm mich mit, O Herbst
Salut Paris!
The alluring Song
Sehnsucht, Heimliches Verlangen
Erste liebe
Wien - du bist das herz der Welt!

Sarah Leonard (soprano) Andrew Ball (piano)
rec 6-8 Jan 1999, Waterloo, London   A Beulah live! recording BEULAH 1RF4 [65.10]

Unlike many Beulah issues this recital is a new recording. It showcases the voice of Sarah Leonard and the lyric delights of Franz Lehár. A glance through the Gramophone database reveals Sarah Leonard as a seasoned recording artist with many discs to her name. The territory takes in Monteverdi and Purcell but with the preponderance in favour of the more modern repertoire: John Harle, Michael Nyman, Alexander Goehr, Gorecki, Bryars and Schnittke. She has also recorded British songs. Lehár is not a name I would have associated with her voice - my problem - not hers. On Radio 3 she has broadcast songs by Bax and at least one vocal work by Elisabeth Maconchy (The Golden Echo and the Leaden Echo).

Although only one of these nineteen songs comes from an operetta several of them have the inflections and spirit I associate with Lehár's 'centre of gravity (or is it levity?). Some of the accompaniments cry out for orchestral treatment (perhaps they exist?) although vivid work by Andrew Ball is never in doubt. The singing is ripe and affecting; singing with the meaning of the words as well as with the musical line. If I have one reservation it is that I had the impression that some of the higher notes were not as comfortably handled as they might have been. The impression is sometimes effortful rather than effortless. However the important thing is the spirit of these songs and that seems well caught. Leonard excels in Die Du Mein Alles Bist with its birdsong - all silvery restraint; while Das Lockende Lied is a coloratura display of Queen Of Night melisma. Möcht's jubelnd rather recalled the Disney musical film Beauty and the Beast. A highlight is Nimm mich mit with its grand heroic inflection in the piano as well as a touch of Griegian simplicity.

A rather nice collection without being utterly compelling and certainly throws welcome light on a little considered part of Lehár's oeuvre.


Rob Barnett


Rob Barnett

Reviews from previous months

You can purchase CDs, tickets and musician's accessories from:

Concert and Show tickets


Musicians accessories

Click here to visit

Return to Index